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ADAM AND EVE 



AUTHOR OF 'DOROTHY FOX. 



IN THREE VOLUMES. 
VOL. HI. 




LONDON : 
RICHARD BENTLEY AND SON, 

|3ublislurs in ©rlinnrij lo %)ix ^^Hnjrstjj the Qntot. 

iSSo. 

\^.An Ri-lds Rescived.'\ 



Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2009 with funding from 

University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign 



http://www.archive.org/details/adameve03parr 




ADAM AXD EVE. 




CHAPTER I. 

Y the time Reuben May entered 
the little town of Looe, he 
had come to a decision about 
his movements, and how he should cany 
out his plan of getting back to London. 
Xot going with Captain Triggs, for the 
monotonous inaction of a sailing voyage 
would now be insupportable to him ; but by 
w^alking as far as he could, and now and 
then, whenever it was possible, endeavour- 
ing to get a cheap hft on the road. His 

VOL. III. 41 



ADAM AND EVE. 



first step must therefore be to inform Triggs 
of his decision, and to do this he must get 
back to Plymouth, a distance from Looe of 
some fifteen or sixteen miles. 

In going through Looe that morning, he 
had stopped for a few minutes at a small 
inn which stood not far from the beach; 
and having now crossed the river which 
divides West from East Looe, he began 
looking about for this house, intending to 
get some refreshment, to rest for an hour 
or so, and then proceed on his journey. 

Already the town clock was striking six, 
and Reuben calculated that if he started 
between nine and ten, he should have time 
to take another good rest on the road — 
which he had already once that day 
traversed — and reach Plymouth Barbican, 
where the Mary Jane lay, by daybreak. 

The inn found, he ordered his meal, and 
informed the landlady of his intention. 



ADAM AND EVE. 



* Why, do 'ee stop here till mornin', then !' 
exclaimed the large-hearted Cornish woman. 
' If 'tis the matter o' the money,' she added, 
eyeing him critically, ' that's hinderin' 'ee 
from it, it needn't to, for I'll see us don't 
have no quarrel 'bout the price o' the 
bed.' 

Reuben assured her that choice, not 
necessity, impelled his onward footsteps ; 
and thus satisfied, she bade him ' Take and 
lie down on the settle there inside the bar- 
parlour ; for,' she added, ' less 'tis the ser- 
geant over fra Liskeard, 'tain't likely you'll 
be disturbed no ways ; and I shall be in and 
out to see vou'm all ricrht.' 

Reuben stretched himself out, and, over- 
come by the excitement and fatigue of the 
day, was soon asleep and dreaming of those 
happier times when he and Eve had walked 
as friends together. Suddenly some one 
seemed to speak her name, and though the 

41—2 



ADAM AND EVE. 



name at once wove itself into the move- 
ment of the dream, the external sound had 
aroused the sleeper, and he opened his eyes 
to see three men sitting near, talking over 
their grog. 

With just enough consciousness to allow 
of his noticing that one was a soldier and 
the other two were sailors, Reuben looked 
for a minute, then closed his eyes, and was 
again sinking back into sleep, when the 
name of Eve was repeated, and this time 
with such effect that all Reuben's senses 
seemed to quicken into life, and cautiously 
opening his eyes, so as to look without being 
observed, he saw that it was the soldier 
who was speaking. 

' Young chap, thinks I,' he was saying, 
^ you little fancy there's one so near who's 
got your sweetheart's seal dangling to his 
fob ;' and with an air of self-satisfied vanity, 
he held out for inspection a curious little 



ADAM AND EVE, 



seal, which Keuben at once recoofnised as 
the same which he himself had given to Eve. 

The unexpected sight came upon him 
with such surprise, that, had not the height 
of the little table served as a screen to 
shelter him from view, his sudden move- 
ment must have betrayed his wakefulness. 

^ He's a nice one for any woman to be 
tied to, he is,' replied the younger of the 
two sailors. ' Why, the only time as I 
ever had what you may call a fair look at 
un, was one niorht in to the Kino^ o* 
Proosia's, and there he was dealing out his 
soft sawdor to little Nancy Lagassick, as 
if he couldn't live a minute out o' her sio^ht.' 

' That's about it,' laughed the soldier. 
* He's one of your own sort there ; you 
Jacks are all alike, with a wife in every 
port. However/ he added, and as he 
spoke he gave a complacent stroke to his 
good-looking face — * he may thank his 



ADAM AND EVE. 



stars that a matter of seven miles or so 
lays between his pretty Eve and Captain 
Van Courtland's troop, or there'd have 
been a cutting-out expedition that, saving 
the presence of those I speak before,' — and 
he gave a most exasperating wink — ^ might 
have proved a trifle more successful than 
such thing's have of late.' 

o 

' Here, I say,' said the sailor, flaming 
up at this ill-timed jocularity, ^ p'rap's 
you'll tell me what 'tis you're drivin' at ; 
for I've got to hear of it if you, or any o' 
your cloth either, ever made a find yet. 
You're mighty 'cute 'bout other folks, 
though when the spirits was under yer 
very noses, and you searched the houses 
through 'twas knowed to be stowed in, you 
couldn't lay hold on a single cask. 'Tis 
true we mayn't have nabbed the men, but 
by jingo if 't has come to us bein' made 
fools of by the women !' 



ADAM AND EVE. 



' There now, stash it there,' said his older 
comrade, who had no wish to see a quarrel 
ensue. ^ So far as I can see, there's no cause 
for bounce 'twixt either o' us : though, only 
you give us a chance of getting near to 
them, sergeant,' he said, turning to the 
soldier, ' and I'll promise you shall make it 
all square with this pretty lass you fancy, 
while her lover's cutting capers under 
Tyburn tree.' 

' A chance 1' repeated his companion, 
despondingly ; ' where's it to come from, 
and the only one we'd got cut away from 
under us by those Hart chaps V 

' How so, where's the Hart off to, then X 
asked the sergeant. 

' Off to Port Mellint,' said the man ad- 
dressed. ' Nothing but a hoax, I fancy; but 
still she was bound to go/ and so saying he 
tossed off the remainder of his grog, and 
began making a movement, saying, as he 



ADAM AND EVE. 



did so, to his somewhat quarrelsomely dis- 
posed shipmate : ' Here, I say, Bill, come 
long down to the rendezvoos with me, and 
if there's nothin' up for to-night, what d'ye 
say to stepping round to Paddy Burke's ? 
he's asked us to come ever so many times, 
you know.' 

' Paddy Burke !' said the sergeant ; ^ what,, 
do you know him ? why, if you're going 
there, I'll step so far with you.' 

'Well, we're bound for the rendezvoos 
first,' said the sailor. 

' All right ; I can find plenty to do while 
you're in there.' 

' Then come along;' and only stopping to 
exchange a few words in passing with the 
landlady, out they all went, and Reuben 
was left alone, a prey to the thoughts which 
now came crowding into his mind. 

For a few minutes he sat with his arms 
resting on the table, as if communing with 



ADAM AND EVE. 



himself ; then, starting up as if filled with a 
sudden resolve, he went out and asked the 
landlady a few commonplace questions, 
and finally inquired whereabouts, and in 
what direction, did the rendezvous lie ? 

' Close down by the bridge, the first 
house after you pass the second turning. 
Why V she said ; ' be 'ee wanting to see 
anybody there V 

' No,' said Reuben ; * I only heard the 
fellows that came in there talkinof about 
the rendezvous, and I wondered whether 
I'd passed it.' 

* Why, iss, o' course you did, comin' in. 
'Tis the house with the flao- streamin' over 
the doorways.' 

Reuben waited for no further informa- 
tion. He said something about not know- 
ing it was so late, bade the landlady a 
rather abrupt farewell, and went his way. 

Down the narrow street he hurried. 



10 ADAM AND EVE, 

turned a corner, and found himself in front 
of the house indicated, outside which all 
was dark. Nobody near, and, wdth the 
exception of himself, not a soul to be seen. 
Inside, he could hear voices, and the more 
plainly from the top sash of the window 
being a little way ojoen. By the help of 
the iron stanchion driven in to support the 
flag-staff, he managed to get up, steady 
himself on the window-sill^ and take a sur- 
vey of the room. Several men were in it, 
and among them the two he had already 
seen, one of whom was speaking to a per- 
son whom, from his uniform, Keuben took 
to be an officer. 

The sight apparently decided what he 
had before hesitated about, and getting 
down, he took from his pocket a slip of 
paper— one he had provided in case he 
should want to leave a message for Eve — 
^nd rapidly wrote on it these words : 



ADAM AND EVE. 11 

' The Lottery is expected at Polperro to- 
night. They will land at Down End as 
soon as the tide will let them sfet near/ 

Folding this, he once more mounted the 
window-sill, tossed the paper into the room, 
lingered for but an instant to see that it 
was picked up, then jumped down, ran with 
all speed, and was soon lost amid the dark- 
ness which surrounded him. 

As he hurried from the house, an echo 
seemed to carry to his ears the shout 
which greeted this surprise — a surprise 
which set every one talking at once, each 
one speaking and no one listening. Some 
were for going, some for staying away ; 
some for treatins^ it as a serious matter, 
others for taking it as a joke. 

At leno'th the officer called ' Silence !' 
and after a pause, addressing the men pre- 
sent in a few words, he said that however 



1 2 ADAM AND E VE. 

it might turn out, he considered that he 
should only be doing his duty by ordering 
the boats to proceed to the place named, 
and see what amount of truth there was in 
this somewhat mysterious manoeuvre. If 
it was nothing but a hoax, they must 
bear to have the laugh once more turned 
against them ; but should it turn out the 
truth ! The buzz which greeted this bare 
supposition showed how favourably his 
decision was regarded, and the absent men 
were ordered to be summoned without 
delay. Everything was got ready as quickly 
as possible, and in little over an hour two 
boats started, fully equipped and manned, 
to lie in ambush near the coast midway 
between Looe and Polperro. 

While fate, in the shape of Keuben May^ 
had been hastening events towards a 
disastrous climax, the course of circum- 
stances in Polperro had not gone altogether 



ADAM AND EVE. 13 

smootlily. To Eve's vexation, because 
of the impossibility of speaking of her 
late encounter with Keuben May, she 
found, on her return home, that during her 
absence Mrs. Tucker had arrived, Avith the 
rare and unappreciated announcement that 
she had come to stop and have her tea with 
them. The example set by Mrs. Tucker 
was followed by an invitation to two or 
three other elderly friends, so that between 
her hospitality and her excitement, Joan 
had no opportunity of noticing any undue 
change in Eve's manner or apjDearance. 
Two or three remarks were made on her 
pale face and abstracted air, but this more 
by the way of teasing than anything else ; 
while Joan, remembering the suppressed 
anxiety she was most probably trying to 
subdue, endeavoured to come to her aid, 
and assist in turning away this over- 
scrutiny of her tell-tale appearance. 



14 ADAM AND EVE. 

The opportunity thus afforded by silence 
gave time for reflection, and Eve, who 
had never been quite straightforward or 
very exphcit about herself and Beuben 
May, now began to hesitate. Perhaps, 
after all, it would be better to say nothing ; 
for Joan was certain to ask questions 
which, without betraying the annoyance 
she had undergone, Eve hardly saw her 
way to answering. Again, it was not im- 
possible but that Reuben's anger might 
relent ; and if so, he would most probably 
seek another interview, in which to beg 
her pardon. 

In her heart Eve hoped and believed 
this w^ould be the case ; for, indignantly 
as she had defied Reuben's scorn and 
flung back his reproaches, they had been 
each a separate sting to her, and she 
longed for the chance to be afforded 
Reuben of seeing how immeasurably above 



ADAM AND EVE. 15 

the ofeneral run of men was the one she 
had chosen. 

* Here, I say, Eve !' exclaimed Joan, as 
she came indoors from bidding good-bye to 
the last departure. ' Come, bear a hand 
and let's set the place all straight ; I can't 
abide the men's coming home to find us all 
in a muddle.' 

Eve turned to with a good will, and the 
girls soon had the satisfaction of seeing 
the room look as bright and cheery as they 
desired. 

' Let's see — ten minutes past 'leben,' said 
Joan, looking at the clock. ' I don't see 
how 'tis possible for 'em to venture in 'fore 
wan, 'less 'tis to Yallow Kock, and they'd 
hardly try that. What do 'ee say. Eve — 
shall we run up out to cliff, top o' Talland 
Lane, and see if us can see any signs of 
'emr 

' Oh, do, Joan !' 



16 ADAM AND EVE. 

And, throwing their cloaks over them, 
off they set. 

^ Here, give me your hand,' said Joan, as 
they reached the gate and entered upon 
the path which Eve had last trod with 
Adam by her side. ' I knaw the path 
better than you, and 'tis a bit narrow for a 
pitch-dark night like this. Take care, 
we'm come to the watter ; that's right. 
Now up we goes till we get a-top, and then 
we'll have a good look round us.' 

Thus instructed, Eve managed to get on, 
^nd, stumbling up by Joan's side, they 
quickly reached the narrow line of level 
which seemed to overhang the depths below. 

' We couldn't see them if they were 
there,' said Eve, turning to Joan, who was 
still peering into the darkness. 

' No, 'tis blacker than I thought/ said 
Joan, cheerily; 'that's ever so much help 
to 'em, and, hooray ! the fires is out ! Do 



ADAM AND EVE. 17 

'ee see, Eve ? there ain't a spark o' nothin', 
nowheres. Ole Jonathan's hoaxed 'em 
fine this time ; the gawpuses have sooked 
it all in, and, I'll be bound, raced off so 
fast as wind and tide 'ud carry 'em/ 

'Then they're sure to come, now?' said 
Eve, excitedly. 

* Certain,' said Joan. ' They've seed the 
fires put out, and knaw it means the bait's 
swallowed, and the cruiser is ofi". I shouldn't 
wonder a bit if they'm close in shore, only 
waitin' for the tide to give 'em a proper 
draw o' water, so that they may send the 
keofs over.' 

' Should we go on a bit farther,' said 
Eve, ' and get down the hill by the 
Warren stile ? AYe might meet some of 
'em, perhaps.' 

* Better not/ said Joan. *To tell 'ee 
the truth, 'tis best to make our way 
home so quick as can, for I wudn't say 

VOL. III. 42 



18 ADAM AND EVE. 

US 'ull have 'em back quicker than I 
thought.' 

* Then, let's make haste !' exclaimed Eve, 
giving her hand to Joan, while she turned 
her head to take a farewell glance in the 
direction where it was probable the vessel 
was now waiting. * Oh, Joan ! what's 
that V For a fiery arrow had seemed to 
shoot along the darkness, and in quick suc- 
cession came another and another. 

Joan did not answer; but she seemed to 
catch her breath, and, clutching hold of 
Eve, she made a spring up on to the wall 
over which they had before been looking. 
And now a succession of sharp cracks 
were heard, then the tongues of fire darted 
through the air, and again all was gloom. 

' O Lord I' groaned Joan ; ' I hope 
'tain't nothin's gone wrong with 'em.' 

In an instant Eve had scrambled up by 
her side. 



ADAM AND EVE, 19 

' What can it be ? What could go 
wrong, Joan ?' — but Joan's whole attention 
seemed now^ centred on the opposite cliff, 
from where, a little below Hard Head, 
after a few minutes' watching, Eve saw a 
blue light burning ; this was answered by 
another lower down, then a rocket was 
sent up, at sight of which Joan clasped 
her hands, and cried : 

* Awh, 'tis they I 'tis they ! Lord save 
'em ! Lord help 'em ! They cursed 
hounds have surely played 'em false !' 

^ What, not taken them, Joan ?' 

' They won't be taken,' she said fiercely. 
' Do you think, unless 'twas over their dead 
bodies, they'd ever let king's men stand 
masters on the Lottery s deck X 

Eve's heart died within her, and with 
one rush every detail of the lawless life 
seemed to come before her. 

' There they go again !' cried Joan, and 

42—2 



20 • ADAM AND EVE. 

this time, by the sound, she knew their 
position was altered to westward, and some- 
what nearer into land. ' Lord send they 
mayn't knaw their course,' she continued ; 
''tis but a point or two on, and they'll 
surely touch the Steeple Eeef. Awh, you 
blidthirsty cowards ! I wish I'd the pitchin' 
of every man of 'ee overboards ; 'tis precious 
little mercy you'd get from me ! And the 
blessed sawls to be caught in yer snarin' 
traps close into home — anighst their very 
doors, too. Eve, I must go and see what 
they means to do for 'em. They'll never 
suffer to see 'em butchered whilst there's a 
man in Polperro to go out and help 'em.' 

Forgetting in her terror all the difficul- 
ties she had before seen in the path. Eve 
managed to keep up with Joan, whose 
flying footsteps never stayed until she 
found herself in front of a long building, 
close under shelter of the Peak, which had 



ADAM AND EVE. 21 



been named as a sort of assembling-place 
in case of danger. 

' 'Tis they 1' she called out, in breathless 
agony, pushing her way through the crowd 
of men now hastening up from all direc- 
tions towards the captam of the Cleopatra. 

^ I'm feared so,' and his grave face be- 
spoke how fraught with anxiety his fears 
were. 

^ What can it be, d'ee think f 

^ Can't tell noways. They who brought 
us word saw the Hart sail, and steady 
watch has been kept up, so that us knaws 
her ain't back.' 

* You mains to do somethin' for 'em V 
said Joan. 

* Never fear but us'll do what us can — 
though that's mighty little, I can tell 'ee, 
Joan.' 

Joan gave an impatient groan. Her 
thorough comprehension of their danger 



22 ADAM AND EVE. 

and its possible consequences lent activity 
to her distress, while Eve, with nothing 
more tangible than the knowledge that a 
terrible danger was near, seemed the prey 
to indefinite horrors, which took away from 
her every sense but the sense of suffering. 

By this time the whole place was astir, 
people running to this point and that, ask- 
ing questions, listening to rumours, hazard- 
ing a hundred conjectures, each more wild 
than the other. A couple of boats had 
been manned ready to row round by the 
cliff. One party had gone towards the 
Warren, another to Yellow Bock. 

All were filled with the keenest desire 
not only to aid their comrades, but to be 
revenged on those who had snared them 
into this cunningly-devised pitfall. But 
amid all this zeal arose the question : 
What could they do ? 

Absolutely nothing — for by this time the 



ADAM AND EVE. 23 

firing had ceased, the contest was ap- 
parently over, and around them impene- 
trable darkness again reigned supreme. 
To show any Hghts by which some point of 
land should be discovered might only 
serve as a beacon to the enemy. To send 
out a boat might be to run it into their very 
jaws, for surely, were assistance needed, 
those on board the Lottery would know that 
by this time trusty friends were anxiously 
watching, waiting for but the slightest 
signal to be given to risk life and limb in 
their service. 

The wisest thing to be done was to put 
everything in order for a sudden call, and 
then sit down and patiently abide the 
result. This decision being put into effect, 
the excited crowd began to thin, and before 
long, w^ith the exception of those who could 
render assistance, very few lookers-on re- 
mained. Joan had lingered till the last, 



24 ADAM AND E VE, 

and then, urged by the possibiHty that 
many of her house-comforts might be 
needed, she hurried home to join Eve, who 
had gone before her. 

With their minds running upon all the 
varied accidents of a fight, the girls, with- 
out exchanging a word of their separate 
fears, got ready what each fancied might 
prove the best remedy, until, nothing more 
being left to do, they sat down, one on each 
side the fire, and counted the minutes by 
which time dragged out this weary watch- 
ing into hours. 

' Couldn't 'ee say a few hymns or some- 
thin', Eve '?' Joan said at length, with a 
hope of breaking this dreadful monotony. 

Eve shook her head. 

'No*?' said Joan, disappointedly. 'I 
thought you might ha' knowed o' some.' 
Then, after another pause, struck by a 
happier suggestion, she said : ^ S'pose us 



ADAM AND E VE. 25 

was to get down the big Bible and read a 
bit, eh — what do 'ee say f 

But Eve only shook her head again. 

' No,' she said, in a hard dry voice. ^ I 
couldn't read the Bible now.' 

^Couldn't 'ee? sighed Joan. 'Then, 
after all, it don't seem that religion and 
that's much of a comfort. By what I'd 
heard,' she added, ' I thought 'twas made o' 
purpose for folks to lay hold on in times o' 
trouble.' 




CHAPTEE II. 




T was close upon three o'clock ; 
Joan had fallen into an uneasy 
doze, and Eve was beginning to 
nod, when a rattle of the latch made them 
both start up. 

' It can't be — iss, it is, though !' screamed 
Joan, rushing forward to meet Adam, who 
caught both the girls in a close embrace. 
' Uncle ? uncle V Joan cried. 
'AH safe,' said Adam, releasing her, 
while he strained Eve closer to his heart. 
' We're all back safe and sound, and, saving 



ADAM AND E VE. 27 

Tom Braddon and Israel Rickard, ^Yithout 
a scratch pon any of us.' 

^ Thank God !' sighed Eve ; while Joan, 
verily jumping for joy, cried : 

' But where be they to, eh, Adam ? I 
must rin, where ever 'tis, and see 'em, and 
make sure of it with my awn eyes.' 

' I left them down to quay with the rest 
— they're all together there/ said Adam, 
unwilling to lose the opportunity of securing 
a few minutes alone with Eve, and yet 
unable to command his voice, so that it 
should sound in its ordinary tone. The jar 
in it caught Joan's quick ear, and, turning, 
she said : 

'Why, whatever have 'ee bin about, 
then % What's the mainin' of it all ? Did 
they play 'ee false, or how X 

Adam gave a puzzled shake of the head. 

' You know quite as much about it as I 
do,' he said. 'We started, and got on fair and 



28 ADAM AND E VE. 

right enough so far as Down End, and I was 
for at once dropping out the " kegs," as had 
been agreed upon to do. at Sandy Bottom.' 

^Welir said Joan. 

' Yes^ 'twould ha' been well if we'd done 
it. I'stead of which, no sooner was the fires 
seen to be out, meaning, as all thought, that 
the Hart was safe off, than nothing would 
do but we must go on to Yellow Rock, 
which meant waiting for over an hour till 
the tide served for it.' 

^ But you never gived in to 'em, Adam ?' 

' Gived in !' he repeated bitterly ; ^ after 
Jerrem had once put the thought into their 
heads you might so well have tried to turn 
stone walls as get either one to lay a finger 
on anything. They wanted to know what 
was the good o' taking the trouble to sink 
the kegs overboard, when by just waitin' 
we could store all safe in the caves along 
there — under cliff.' 



ADAM AND E VE. 29 

' Most half drunk, I s pose '?' said Joan. 

' By Jove ! then they'd pretty soon 
something to make 'em sober,' re^Dhed 
Adam, grimly; 'for in little more than 
half-an-hour we spied the two boats comin' 
up behind us, and 'fore they was well 
caught sight of, they'd opened out fire/ 

* And had 'ee got to return it?' asked Joan. 

* Not till they were close up, we didn't, 
and then I b'lieve the sight of us would 
have been enough ; only, as usual, Mr. 
Jerrem must be on the contrary, and let 
fly a shot that knocked down the bow-oar 
of the foremost boat like a nine-pin. That 
got up their blood a bit, and then at it our 
chaps went, tooth and nail — such a scrim- 
mage as hasn't been seen hereabouts since 
the Happy-go- Lucky was took, and Wei land 
shot in her.' 

' Lord save us ! however did 'ee manao'e 
to get off so well V said Joan. 



30 ADAM AND EVE. 

* Get off !' he said ; * why, we could 
have made a clean sweep of the whole lot, 
and all the cry against me now is that I 
kept 'em from doing it. The fools ! not 
to see that our best chance is to do nothing 
more than defend ourselves and not run 
our necks into a noose by taking life while 
there's any help for it.' 

^ Was the man shot dead that Jerrem 
fired at ?' asked Eve. 

* No, I hope not ; or, if so, we haven't 
heard the last of it ; for, depend on it, this 
new officer, Buller, he's an ugly customer 
to deal with, and won't take things quite 
so easy as old Ravens used to do.' 

* You'll be faintin' for somethin' to eat,' 
said Joan, moving towards the kitchen. 

' No, I ain't,' said Adam, laying a de- 
taining hand upon her. ^ I couldn't touch 
a thing; I want to be a bit quiet, that's all. 
My head seems all of a miz-maze like.' 



ADAM AND EVE. 31 



^ Then I'll just ruD down and see uncle/ 
said Joan, ^ and try and persuade 'en to 
come home alongs, shall I T 

Adam gave an expressive movement of 
his face. 

' You can try,' he said, ' but you haven't 
got much chance o' bringin' him, poor old 
chap ! He thinks, like the rest of 'em, 
that they've done a fine night's work, and 
they must keep it up by drinking to blood 
and glory. I only hope it may end there, 
but if it doesn't, whatever comes, Jer- 
rem's the one who's got to answer for it all.' 

While he was saying these words, Adam 
was pulling off his jacket, and now went to 
the kitchen to find some water with which 
to remove the black and dirt from his 
begrimed face and hands. 

Eve hastened to assist him, but not be- 
fore Joan had managed, by laying her 
finger on her lip, to attract her attention. 



32 ADAM AND EVE. 

^ For goodness gracious' sake,' she whis- 
pered, ' don't 'ee brathe no word 'bout the 
letter to un; there'd be worse than murder 
'twixt 'em now.' 

Eve nodded an assurance of silence, and 
opening the door, Joan went out into the 
street, already alive with people, most of 
them bent on the same errand as herself, 
anxious to hear the incidents of the fio^ht 
confirmed by the testimony of the principal 
actors. 

The gathering-point was the sail-house 
behind the Peak, and thither, in company 
with several friends, Joan made her way, 
and soon found herself hailed with delight 
by Uncle Zebedee and Jerrem, both of 
whom were by this time primed up to 
giving the most extraordinary and vivid 
accounts of the fight, every detail of which 
was entirely corroborated by those who 
had been present and those who had been 



ADAM AND EVE. 33 



absent ; for the constant demand made on 
the keg of spirits which, in honour of the 
victory, old Zebedee had insisted on having 
broached there, was beo^innino- to take 
effect, so that the greater portion of 
listeners were now turned into talkers, and 
thus it was impossible to tell those who 
had seen from those who had heard, and 
the wrangling, laughter, disputes, and con- 
gratulations made such a hubbub of confu- 
fusion that the room seemed for the time 
turned into a very Pandemonium. 

Only one thing all gave hearty assent 
to — that was that Jerrem was the hero on 
whom the merit of triumph rested ; for, if 
he hadn't fired that first shot, ten to one 
but they should have listened to somebody 
whom, in deference to Zebedee, they re- 
frained from naming, and indicated by a 
nod in his direction, and let the white- 
livered scoundrels sneak off with the boast 

VOL. HI. 43 



34 ADAM AND EVE. 



that the Polperro men were afraid to give 
fight to them. Afraid ! why, they were 
afraid of nothing, not they I They'd give 
chase to the Hart, board the Looe cutter, 
swamp the boats, and utterly rout and 
destroy the whole Excise department ; the 
more bloodthirsty the resolution i proposed, 
the louder was it greeted. 

The spirit of lawless riot seemed sud- 
denly let loose among them, and men who 
were usually kind-hearted and, after their 
rough fashion, tenderly-disposed, seemed 
turned into devils, whose delight w^as in 
violence, and whose pleasure was excess. 

Wliile this revelry was growing more 
fast and furious below, Adam was still 
sitting quietly at home, with Eve by his 
side using her every art to dispel the gloom 
by which her lover's spirits were clouded — 
not so much on account of the recent fight, 
for Adam apprehended no such great score 



ADAM AND E VE. 35 

of danger on that head. It was true that 
of late such frays had been of rare occur- 
rence, yet many had taken place before, 
and with disastrous results, and yet the 
chief actors in them still lived to tell the 
tale ; so that it was not altogether that 
which disturbed him, although it greatly 
added to his former moodiness, which had 
originally sprung out of the growing dis- 
taste to the life he led. The inaction of the 
time spent in dodging about, with nothing 
to occupy him, nothing to interest him, had 
turned Adam's thoughts inward, and made 
him determine to have done with these ven- 
tures, in which, except as far as the gain 
went, he really had nothing in common with 
the companions who took part in them ; 
but as he very well knew, it was far easier 
to take this resolution in thought than 
it Avas to put it into action. Once let the 
idea of his leaving them get abroad, and 

43—2 



36 ADAM AND EVE. 

difficulties would confront him whichever 
way he turned ; obstacles would block his 
path, and suspicion dodge his footsteps. 

His comrades, though not very far-seeing 
men, were quite sharp enough to estimate 
the danger of losing sight of one who was 
in possession of all their secrets, and who 
could at any moment lay his finger upon 
every hiding-place in their district. 

Adam himself had often listened to, 
and, in company with others, silently com- 
mended, a story told of years gone by, when 
a brother of the owner of the Stamp and Go, 
one Herkles Johns, had been pressed into 
the king's service, and had there acquitted 
himself so gallantly that, on his return, a 
commission had been offered to him, which 
he, longing to take, accepted under con- 
dition of getting leave to see his native 
place again. With the foreboding that the 
exchange of circumstances would not be 



ADAM AND EVE. 37 

well received, he seized the opportunity 
occasioned by the joy of his return to speak 
of the commission as a reward offered to 
him, and asked the advice of those around 
as to whether he had not best accept it. 
Opposition met him on every side. * What !' 
they said, ' of his own free-will, put himself 
in a place where some day he might be forced 
to seize his father's vessel, or swear away 
the lives of those he had been born among T 
The bare idea was inadmissible ; and when, 
from asking advice, he grew into giving his 
opinion, and finally into announcing his 
decision, an ominous silence fell on those 
who heard him, and though he was un- 
molested during his stay, and permitted to 
leave his former home, he was never known 
to reach his ship, aboard which his mysteri- 
ous disappearance was much talked of, and 
inquiries set afloat to find out the reason of 
his absence ; but among those whose name 



38 ADAM AND EVE. 

he bore^ and whose confidence he had 
shared, he seemed to be utterly forgotten. 
His name was never mentioned, nor his 
fate inquired into ; and Adam, remembering 
that he had seen the justice of this treat- 
ment, felt the full force of its reasoning 
now applied to his own case, and his heart 
sank before the difficulties in which he 
found himself entangled. 

Even to Eve he could not open out his- 
mind clearly, for, unless to one born and 
bred among them, the dangers and interests 
of the free-traders was a matter quite beyond 
comprehension ; so that now, when Eve wa& 
pleading, with all her powers of persuasion, 
that for her sake Adam would give up this 
hfe of reckless daring, the seemingly deaf 
ear he turned to her entreaties was dulled 
through perplexity, and not, as she believed, 
from obstinacy. 

Eve, in her turn, could not be thoroughly 



ADAM AND E VE. 39 

explicit. There was a skeleton cupboard, the 
key of which she was hiding from Adam's 
sight ; for it was not entirely * for her sake ' 
she desired him to abandon his present oc- 
cupation : it was because, in the anxiety she 
had recently undergone, in the terror which 
had been forced upon her, the glaze of 
security had been roughly dispelled, and the 
life, in all its lawlessness and violence, had 
stood forth before her. The warnings and 
denunciations which only a few hours before, 
when Keuben May had uttered them, she 
had laughed to scorn as idle words, now 
rang in her ears hke a fatal knell ; the rope 
he had said would hang them all was then 
a sieve of unsown hemp — since sprung up, 
and now the fatal cord Avhich danorled 
dangerously near. 

The secret thoughts of each fell like a 
shadow between them ; an invisible hand 
seemed to thrust them asunder, and, in spite 



40 ADAM AND EVE. 

of the love they both felt, both were equally 
conscious of a want of that enth'e sympathy 
which is the keystone to perfect union. 

^ You ivere very glad to see me 
come back to you, Eve V Adam asked, as, 
tired of waiting for Joan, Eve at length 
decided to sit up no longer. 

^ Glad, Adam ! Why do you ask V 

' I can't tell/ he said. ' I s'pose it's this 
confounded upset of everything that makes 
me feel as I do feel, as if,' he added, passing 
his hand over his forehead, ' I hadn't a bit 
of trust or hope or comfort in anything in 
the world.' 

' I know exactly,' said Eve. ' That's 
just as I felt when we were waiting for 
you to come back. Joan asked if we should 
read the Bible, but I said no ; I couldn't, 
I felt too wicked for that.' 

' Wicked !' said Adam. ' Why, what 
should make you feel wicked V 



ADAM AND EVE. 41 

Eve hesitated. Should she unburden 
her heart, and confess to him all the fears 
and scruples which made it feel so heavy 
and ill at ease ? A moment's indecision, 
and, the opportunity lost, she said in a 
dejected tone : 

' Oh, I cannot tell ; only that I suppose 
such thoughts come to all of us sometimes.' 

Adam looked at her, but Eve's eyes were 
averted ; and seeing how pale and troubled 
was the expression on her face, he said : 

* You are over- tired ; all this turmoil has 
been too much for you. Go off now, and 
try to get some sleep. Yes ; don't stay up 
longer,' he added, seeing that she hesitated. 
^ I shall be glad of some rest myself, and 
to-morrow we shall find things looking 
better than they seem to do now.' 

Once alone, Adam reseated himself, and 
sat gazing abstractedly into the fire ; then 
with an effort he seemed to try and shake 



42 ADAM AND EVE. 

his senses together, to step out of himself 
and put his mind into a working order of 
thought, so that he might weigh and sift 
the occurrences of these recent events. 

The first question which had flashed into 
everybody's mind was, what had led to this 
sudden attack % Had they been betrayed? 
and, if so, who had betrayed them % Could 
it be Jonathan ? Though the thought wa& 
at once negatived, no other outsider knew 
of their intended movements. Of course, 
the matter had been discussed — as all 
matters were discussed and voted for or 
against — among the crew ; but to doubt 
either of them was to doubt one's self^ 
and any fear of betrayal among them- 
selves was unknown. The amount of base- 
ness such a suspicion would imply wa& 
too great to be incurred even in thought. 
What, then, could have led to this sur- 
prise % Had their movements been 



ADAM AND E VE. 43 

watched, and this decoy of the cutter 
only swallowed with the view of throwing- 
them off their guard ? 

Adam was lost in speculation, from 
which he was aroused by the door beings 
softly opened and Joan coming in. 

^ Why, Adam, T thought to find 'ee in 
bed,' she said. ' Come, now, you must be 
dreadful tired.' Then, sitting down to 
loosen her hood, she added with a sigh, ' I 
stayed down there so long as I could, till 
I saw 't wasn't no good, so I corned away 
home and left 'em. 'Tis best way, I 
b'lieve.' 

' I knew 'twas no good your going,' said 
Adam, hopelessly. ' I saw before I left 
'em what they'd made up their minds to.' 

' Well, perhaps there's a little excuse this 
time,' said Joan, not willing to blame those 
who were so dear to her ; ' but, Adam,' 
she broke out, while her face bespoke her 



44 ADAM AND EVE. 

keen appreciation of his superiority : * Why 
can't th' others be like you, awh, my dear ? 
how different things ud be if they only 
was.' 

Adam shook his head. 

' Oh, don't wish 'em like me,' he said. ^' I 
often wish I could take my pleasure in the 
same things, and in the same way, that they 
do ; I should be much happier, I b'lieve.' 

* No, now, don't 'ee say that.' 

' Why, what good has it done that I'm 
otherwise ?' 

^Why, ever so much; more than you'll 
ever know by a good bit. I needn't go 
no further than my awn self to tell 'ee that ; 
p'r'aps you mayn't think it, but I've bin 
kep' fra doin' ever so many things by the 
thought o' what'U Adam say ? and with the 
glass in my hand I've set it down untasted^ 
thinkin' to myself, ''Now you'm actin' agen 
Adam's wish, you knaw." ' 



ADAM AND E VE. 45 



Adam smiled as he gave her a Httle 
shake of the hand. 

' That's how 'tis, you see,' she continued ; 
' you'm doin good without knawin' of it .' 
Then, turning her dark eyes wistfully upon 
him, she asked : ' Do 'ee ever think a bit 
'pon poor Joan, while you'm away, Adam ? 
Come, now, you mustn't shove off from me 
altogether, you knaw ; you must leave me 
a dinkey little corner to squeeze into by.' 

Adam clasped her hand tighter : ' Oh, 
Joan,' he said, ' I'd give the world to see 
my way clearer than I do now ; I often 
wish that I could take you all off to some 
place far away, and begin life over again.' 

' Ah !' said Joan, in a tone of sympathy 
to which her heart did not very cordially 
respond, ' that 'ud be a capital job, that 
would; but you ain't mainin' away from 
Polperro '?' 

' Yes, far away. I've bin thinkin' about it 



46 ADAM AND E VE, 

for a good bit : don't you remember I said 
something o' the sort to father a httle time 
back r 

* Iss, but I didn't knaw there was any 
more sense to your words than to threaten 
un Hke. Awh, my dear !' she said, with a 
decided shake of the head, * that 'ud never 
do ; don't 'ee get hold o' such a thought as 
that. Turn your back upon the place ! why, 
whatever 'd they be about to let 'ee do it ?' 

Joan's words only echoed Adam's own 
thoughts ; still he tried to combat them by 
saying : ' I don't see why any one should 
interfere with what I might choose to do ; 
what odds could it make to them V 

' Odds !' repeated Joan ; ' why, you'd 
hold all their lives in your wan hand. Only 
ax yourself the question, where's either one 
of 'em you'd like to see take hisself off no- 
body knows why or where V 

Adam could find no satisfactory reply to 



ADAM AND EVE. 47 

this argument ; he therefore changed the 
subject by saying : 

* I wish I could fathom this last business. 
'Tis a good deal out o' the course o' plain 
sailing. So far as I know by, there wasn't 
a living soul but Jonathan who could have 
said what was up for to-night/ 

'Jonathan's right enough/ said Joan, 
decidedly. * I should feel a good deal 
more mistrust 'bout some of 'em lettin' 
their tongues rin too fast.' 

* There was nobody to let them run fast 
to,' said Adam. 

* Then there's the writin',' said Joan, 
trying to discover if Adam knew anything 
about Jerrem's letter. 

Adam shook his head. 

' 'Tisn't nothing o' that sort,' he said. ' I 
don't know that, beyond Jerrem and me, 
either o' the others know how to write ; 
and I said particular that I should send no 



48 ADAM AND EVE. 



word by speech or letter, and the rest must 
do the same ; and Jonathan would ha' told 
me if they'd broke through in any way, 
for I put the question to him 'fore he 
shoved off.' 

* Oh, did 'ee ?' said Joan, turning her eyes 
away, while into her heart there crept a 
suspicion of Jonathan's perfect honesty. 
Was it possible that his love of money 
might have led him to betray his old 
friends ? Joan's fears were aroused. 

' 'Tis a poor job of it/ she said, anxiously. 
^ I wish to goodness 't had happened to any 
o' the rest, so long as you and uncle was 
out of it.' 

* And not Jerrem ?' said Adam, with a 
feeble attempt at his old teasing. 

* Awh, Jerrem's sure to fall 'pon his feet, 
throw un which way you will/ said Joan. 
' Besides, if he didn't ' — and she turned a 
look of reproach on Adam — ' Jerrem ain't 



ADAM AND E VE. 49 

you, Adam, nor uncle neither. I don't 
deny that I don't love Jerrem dearly, 'cos 
I do ' — and for an instant her voice seemed 
to wrestle with the rush of tears which 
streamed from her eyes as she sobbed — 
^ but for you or uncle, why, I'd shed my 
heart's blood like watter, iss that I would, 
and not think 'twas any such great thing- 
neither.' 

' There's no need to tell me that,' said 
Adam, whose heart, softened by his love 
for Eve, had grown very tender towards 
Joan. ' Nobody knows you better than I 
do. There isn't another woman in the 
whole world I'd trust with the things I'd 
trust you with, Joan.' 

' There's a dear,' said Joan, recovering 
herself. ^ It does me good to hear 'ee 
spake like that. 'Tis such a time since I 
had a word with 'ee that I beo^an to feel I 
don't know how wise.' 

VOL. III. 44 



50 ADAM AND E VE. 

* Well, yes/ said Adam, smiling, ' 'tis a 
bravish spell since you and me were to- 
gether by our own two selves. But I 
declare your talk's done me more good 
than anything I've had to-day. I feel 
ever so much better now than I did before.' 

Joan was about to answer, when a sound 
made them both start and stand for a 
moment listening. 

' 'Tis gone, whatever it was/ said Adam, 
taking a step forward. ' I don't hear 
nothing now, do you ?' 

Joan pushed back the door leading to 
the stairs. 

' No,' she said ; ^ I reckon 'twas nothin 
but the boards. Howiver, 'tis time I went, 
or I shall be wakin' up Eve. Her's a poor 
sleeper in general, but what with wan 
thing and 'nother, I 'spects her's reg'lar 
worn out, poor sawl, to-night.' 










CHAPTEE III. 




OKN out and tired as she felt 
when she went upstairs, Eve's 
mind was so excited by the day's 
adventures that she found it impossible to 
lull her sharpened senses into anything like 
repose, and after hearing Joan come in she 
lay tossing and restless, wondering why it 
was she did not come up, and what could 
possibly be the cause of her stopping so 
long below. 

As time went on her impatience grew 
into anxiety, vrhich in its turn became 

44—2 

LIBRARY 

UNIVERS|-nr OF ILUNOIS 



52 ADAM AND E VE. 

suspicion, until, unable longer to restrain 
herself, she got up, and, after listening 
with some evident surprise at the stair- 
head, cautiously stole down the stairs, and 
peeped through the chink left by the ill- 
fitting hinge of the door into the room. 

* There isn't another woman in the whole 
world I'd trust with the things I'd trust 
you with, Joan,' Adam was saying. Eve 
bent a trifle further forward. * You've 
done me more good than anything I've had 
to-day. I feel ever so much better now 
than I did before.' 

An involuntary movement — giving a 
different balance to her position — made the 
stairs creak, and to avoid detection. Eve 
had to make a hasty retreat, and hurry 
back, so that when Joan came upstairs it 
was to find her, apparently, in such a pro- 
found sleep that there was little reason to 
fear any sound she might make would 



ADAAf AND EVE. 53 

arouse her ; but long after Joan had sunk 
to rest, and even Adam had forgotten his 
troubles and anxieties, Eve nourished and 
fed the canker of jealousy which had crept 
into her heart— a jealousy not directed to- 
wards Joan, but turned upon Adam for 
recaUing to her mind that old grievance of 
not giving her his full trust. 

At another time these speeches would not 
have come with half the importance ; it 
would have been merely a vexation which a 
few sharp words would have exploded and 
put an end to, but now, combined with 
the untoward circumstances of situation — 
for Eve could not confess herself a listener 
— was the fact that her nerves, her senses, 
and her conscience seemed strained to a 
point which made each feather-weight 
appear a burden. 

Filled with that smart of wounded love, 
whose sweetest balm revenge seems to 



54 ADAM AND EVE. 

supply, Eve lay awake until the grey light 
of day had filled the room, and then, from 
sheer exhaustion, she fell into a doze which 
gradually deepened into a heavy sleep, so 
that when she again opened her eyes the 
sun was shining full and strong. 

Starting up, she looked round for Joan ; 
but Joan had been up for a couple of hours 
and more. She had arisen very stealthily, 
creeping about with the hope that Eve 
would not be disturbed by her movements, 
for Adam's great desire was that Eve's 
feelings should be in no way outraged by 
discovering either in Uncle Zebedee or in 
Jerrem traces of the previous night's de- 
bauch ; and this, by Joan's help, was 
manao^ed so well that when Eve made her 
appearance she was told that uncle Zebedee, 
tired, like herself, was not yet awake, while 
Jerrem, brisked up by several nips of raw 
spirit, was lounging about in a state of 



ADAM AND EVE. 



lassitude and depression, which might 
ver}' well be a.ttributed to reaction and 
fatigue. 

Perhaps, if Eve could have known that 
Adam was not present, she would have 
toned down the amount of cordiality she 
threw into her greeting of Jerrem, a greet- 
ing he accepted with such a happy adjust- 
ment of pleasure and gratitude, that to 
have shown a difference on the score of 
Adam's absence would have been to step 
back into their former unpleasant foot- 
ing. 

'Adam's gone out,' said Jerrem, in 
answer to the inquiring look Eve was 
sending round the kitchen. 

' Oh, I wasn't looking for Adam,' said 
Eve, while the rush of vexed colour denied 
the assertion. ' I was wondering where 
Joan could be.' 

' She was in here a minute ago,' said 



56 ADAM AND EVE. 

Jerrem, ' telling ine 'twas a shame to be 
idlin' about so.' 

' Why, are you still busy ?' said Eve. 

* No, nothin to speak of, but what 'uU 
wait, and fit it should, 'till I'd spoken to 
you. Eve. I ain't like one who's gob the 
chance o' comin' when he's minded to,' he 
added, 'or the grass wouldn't ha' had much 
chance o' growin' under my feet after once 
they'd felt the shore. No, now, don't 
look put out with me ; I ain't goin' to ask 
ye to listen to nothin' you don't want to 
hear. I've tried to see the folly o' that 
while I've bin away, and 'tis all done with and 
pitched overboard : and that's what made 
me write that letter, 'cos I wanted us two 
to be hke what we used to be, you know.' 

* I wish you hadn't written that letter, 
though,' said Eve, only half inclined to 
credit Jerrem's assertions. 

' Well, as things have turned out, so do 



ADAM AND EVE. 57 

1/ said Jerrem, who, although he did not 
confess it to himself, would have given all 
he possessed to feel quite certain Eve 
would keep his secret. * You see, it's so 
awkard like, when everybody's tryin' to 
ferret out how this affair came about. You 
didn't happen to mention it to nobody, I 
s'pose '?' and he turned a keen glance of 
inquiry towards Eve. 

' Me mention it !' said Eve. ' I should 
think not. Joan can tell 3^ou how angry 
we both were, for of course we knew that 
unless Adam had some good cause he 
wouldn't have wished it kept so secret.' 

' And do you think I should have quitted 
a word to any livin' soul but yourself?' 
exclaimed Jerrem. ' I haven't much sense 
in your eyes, I know. Eve, but you might 
give me the credit o' knowing who's to be 
trusted and who isn't.' 

' What's that about trustin' ?' said Joan, 



58 ADAM AND EVE. 

who now made her appearance. ' I tell ^ee 
what 'tis, Mr. Jerrem, you'm not to be 
trusted anyhows. Why, w^hat could 'ee ha' 
bin thinkin' of to go sendin' that letter you 
did after Adam had spoke to 'ee all % There'd 
be a purty set out of it, you knaw, Jerrem^ 
if the thing was to get winded about. I,. 
for wan, shouldn't thank 'ee, I can tell 'ee, 
for gettin' my name mixed up with it, and 
me made nothin' better than a cat's-paw 
ofl' 

* Who's goin to wind it about X said 
Jerrem, throwing his arm round her and 
drawing her coaxingly towards him. ' You 
ain't, and I ain't, and I'll answer for it Eve 
ain't ; and so long as we three keep our 
tongues 'atween our teeth, who'll be the 
wiser — eh '?' 

'Awh, that's all very fine,' returned 
Joan, far from mollified, 'but there's 
a somebody hasn't a-kept their tongues. 



ADAM AND EVE. 5^ 

silent ; and who it can be beats me to tell. 
Did Jonathan knaw for certain 'bout the 
landin'? or was it only guess w^ork with un?' 

' I ain't sure — but Jonathan's safe 
enough/ said Jerrem ; ' and so's the rest 
too ; 'twarn't through no blabbin', take my 
word for that ; 'twas a reg'lar right down 
set scheme from beginnin' to end, and 
that's why I should ha' liked to ha' give 
'em a payin' out that they wouldn't ha' 
forgot in a hurry. I'd ha' scored their 
reckonin' for 'em, I can tell 'ee.' 

* Awh ! iss, I dare say,' said Joan, with 
scornful contempt ; ' you allays thinks you 
knaws better than they you'm bound to 
listen to. Howsomedever, when aU's said 
and done, I shall finish with the same I 
began with — that you'd no right to send 
that letter.' 

' Well, you've told me that afore,' said 
Jerrem, sullenly. 



60 ADAM AND EVE. 

' Iss, and now I tells 'ee behind/ retorted 
Joan ; ' and to front and to back and 
round all the sides, so there.' 

' Oh, all right !' said Jerrem ; ' have your 
talk out, it don't matter to me/ and he threw 
himself down on the settle with apparent 
unconcern, taking from his breast-pocket 
a letter which he carefully unfolded. ' Did 
you know that I'd got a letter gived me to 
Guernsey, Eve?' he said. *One they'd ha' 
kept waitin' there for months for me.' 

Eve looked up, and, to her vexation, 
saw Jerrem readinof the letter which on 
her first arrival she had written ; the back 
of it was turned towards her, so as to 
ostentatiously display the two splodges of 
red sealing-wax. 

' Why, you doan't mane to say you've a 
^ot he P exclaimed Joan, her anger com- 
pletely giving way to her amazement. 
* "Well, T never, after all this long whiles, 



ADAM AND EVE. 61 

and us a tryin' to stop un, too ! Eve, do 
'ee see, he's a got the letter you writ, kisses 
and all.' 

^ Joan/ exclaimed Eve, in a tone of 
mingled reproof and annoyance, while 
Jerrem made a feint of pressing the im- 
pressions to his lips, casting the while a 
look in Eve's direction, which Joan inter- 
cepting, she said : 

^ Awh ! iss I would — seeing they'ni so 
much mine as Eve's, and you doant know 
t'other from which.' 

' That's all you can tell,' said Jerrem. 
^ Iss, and all you can tell, too,' replied 
Joan, adding, as the frown on his face be- 
tokened rising anger, ^ there, my dear, you'd 
best step inside wi' me, and get a drop more 
o' your mornin's physic, I reckon.' 

^ Physic ?' growled Jerrem, ' I don't want 
no physic — least wise, no more than I've 
had from you already.' 



62 ADAM AND EVE. 

^ Glad to hear it/ said Joan. ^ When 
you change your mind, which, depend on it, 
'ull be afore long, you'll find me close to 
hand. I must make up a few somethin's 
for this evenin,' she said, addressing Eve, 
' in case any of 'em drops in. Adam's gone 
off,' she added, ^ I don't know where, nor 
he neither, till his work's done.' 

^ Might just so well have saved hisself 
the trouble,' growled Jerrem. 

'No, now, he mightn't,' replied Joan. 
' There's spurrits enough to wan place and 
'tother to float a Injiman in, and the 
sooner 'tis got the rids of the better, for 
'twill be more by luck than good manage- 
ment if all they kegs is got away unseen.' 

^ Oh, of course, Adam's perfect,' sneered 
Jerrem. Then, catching sight of Eve's face, 
as he watched Joan go into the kitchen, he 
added, with a desponding sigh : ' I only 
wish I was — but the world's made for some 



ADAM AND EVE. 63 

— I s'pose the more they have the more 
they get.' 

Eve did not answer ; perhaps she had not 
heard, as she was just now engaged in 
shifting her position, so as to escape the 
dazzhng rays of the sun, which came pouring 
down on her head. The movement seemed 
to awaken her to a sense of the day's unusual 
brightness, and, getting up, she went to the 
window and looked out. 

' Isn't it like summer ?' she said, speaking 
more to herself than to Jerrem. ' I really 
must say I should like to have gone some- 
where for a walk.' 

The words, simple in themselves, flung in 
their tone a whole volume of reproach at 
Adam, for to Eve's exacting mind there 
could be no necessity urgent enough to take 
Adam away without ever seeing her, or 
leavinor a messao^e for her. 

' Well, come out with me,' said Jerrem ; 



64 ADAM AKD EVE. 



'there's notliin I should Hke better than a 
bit of a stroll. I'd got it in my head before 
you spoke.' 

Eve hesitated. 

' P'r'aps you'in thinkin' Adam 'ud blame 
'ee for it.' 

* Oh dear no ! I'm not ! I'm not quite 
such a slave to Adam's opinion as that. 
Besides/ she added, feeling she was speak- 
ing with undue asperity, ' surely everybody 
may go for a walk without being blamed by 
anybody for it — at all events, I mean to go.' 

' That's right, said Jerrem. ' Here, I 
say, Joan, me and Eve's goin' out for a 
little.' 

* Goin' out ! Where to X said Joan, 
coming forward towards the door, to which 
he had advanced. 

' Oh ! round about for a bit— by Chapel 
Rock, and out that ways.' 

* Well, if you goes with her, mind you 



ADAM AND EVE. 65 

comes back with her. D ee hear, now ? 
Don't 'ee trust 'un out o' yer sight, Eve, 
my dear ; not further than you can see 'un, 
nor so far if you can help it.' 

' You mind yer own business/ said 
Jerrem. 

^ If you was to do that you'd stay at 
home, then,' said Joan, dropping her voice ; 
* but that's you all over, tryin' to put 
your finger into somebody else's pie. I 
doubt whether 'twill overplease Adam 
either,' she added, coming back from watch- 
ing them down the street ; ' but there ! if he 
and Eve's to sail in one boat, the sooner 
he learns, 'twon't always be his turn to 
handle the tiller, the better.' 

It was getting on for three o'clock when 
Adam, having completed all the business 
he could accomplish on that day, was re- 
turnino: home. He had been to the few 

VOL. III. 45 



ee ADAM AND E VE, 

gentlemen's houses near, had visited most 
of the large farms round, and had found 
a good many customers ready to relieve him 
of a considerable portion of the spirit which, 
by reason of their living so near at hand, 
would thus evade much of the danger 
attendant on a more distant transfer. 

Everyone had heard of the recent attack 
on the Lottery, and much sympathy was 
expressed, and many congratulations ten- 
dered on account of their happy escape. 

Adam was a general favourite, looked up 
to and respected as an honest, straight- 
forward fellow ; and so little condemnation 
was felt against the trade carried on, that 
the very magistrate consented to take a 
portion of the goods, and saw no breach 
of his office in the admonition he ofave 
to keep a sharp look-out against these 
new-comers, who seemed somewhat over- 
inclined to show their teeth. 



ADAM AND EVE. 67 



Adam spoke freely of the anxiety he felt 
as to the result of the encounter, but very 
few seemed to share it. Most of them 
considered that, having escaped, with the 
exception of strengthened vigilance, no 
further notice would be taken, so that his 
mind was considerably relieved about the 
matter, and his heart felt lighter, and his 
pace more brisk, in returning than when 
in the morning he had set out on his 
errand. 

His last visit had been to Lizzen, and 
thence, instead of going back by the 
road, he struck across to the cliff by a 
narrow path known to him, and which 
would save him some considerable dis- 
tance. 

The day was perfect — the sky cloudless, 
the sea tranquil ; the young verdure of the 
crag-crowned cliffs lay bathed in soft sun- 
shine. For a moment Adam paused, struck by 

45—2 



68 ADAM AND EVE. 

the air of quiet calm which overspread every- 
thing around. Not a breath of wind seemed 
abroad, not a sail in sight, not a sound to be 
heard. A few scattered sheep w^ere lazily 
feeding near ; below them a man was tilling 
a fresh-cleared patch of ground; far away be- 
yond, two figures were standing, side by 
side. 

Involuntarily Adam's eyes rested on 
these two, and while he gazed upon 
them, there sprang up into his heart the 
wish that Eve was here. He wanted her, 
wanted to remind her of the promise she 
had given him before they parted, the pro- 
mise that, on his return, she would no 
longer delay, but tell him the day on which 
he might claim her for his wife. A minute 
more, and, with all speed, he was making 
a straight cut across the cliff-side. Dis- 
regarding the path, he scrambled over the 
projections of rock, and trampled down the 



ADAM AND EVE. 69 

furze, with only one thought in his mind — 
how soon he could reach home. 

' Where's Eve, Joan X he asked, as, 
having looked through tAvo of the rooms, 
he came, still in breathless haste, into the 
outer kitchen, where Joan was now busily 
enorag^ed in bakinof her cakes. 

* Ain't her outside nowheres V said Joan, 
wiping her face with her apron to conceal 
its expression. 

* No, I can't see her.' 

* Awh, then, I reckon they'm not come 
in yet ;' and by this time she had recovered 
herself sufficiently to turn round and answer 
with indifference. 

* Who's they V said Adam, quickly. 

' Why, her went out for a bit of a stroll 
with Jerrem. They ' 

But Adam interrupted her. 

' Jerrem !' he exclaimed. ' Why should 
she go out with Jerrem V 



70 ADAM AND EVE. 

* Awh, he's right enough now,' said Joan. 
* He's so sober as a judge, or I wouldn't ha' 
suffered 'en anighst her. Eve thought she 
should like a bit of a walk, and he offered 
to go with her, and I was very glad of it 
too ; for Tabithy wanted to sandy the 
floors, so their room was better for we than 
their company,' 

' 'Tis very strange/ said Adam, ' that 
Eve can't see^how she puts me out by goin' 
off anyway like this with Jerrem. I won't 
have it/ he added, with rising anger, ' and 
if she's to be my wife she shan't do it 
either ; so she'd best choose between us 
before things go too far.' 

' Awh, don't 'ee take it like that,' said 
Joan, soothingly. ' 'Twasn't done with no 
manin' in it. Her hadn't any more 
thought o' vexin' 'ee than a babby, nor I 
neither, so far as that goes, or I should ha' 
put a stopper on it, you may be sure. 



ADAM AND EVE. 



Why, go and meet 'em. They'm only out 
by Chapel Rock. They left word where 
they was goin' a purpose.' 

A Httle mollified by this, Adam said : 
^ I don't tell Eve everything, but Jerrem 
and I haven't pulled together for a long 
time, and the more we see o' one another 
the worse it is, and the less I want him to 
have anything to say to Eve. He's always 
carryin' on some game or 'nother. When 
we were at Guernsey, he made a reg'lar set 
out of it 'bout some letter that cam.e there 
to him. Well, who could that have been 
from ? Nobody we know anything about, 
or he'd have said so. Besides, who should 
want to write to him, or what business 
had he to go blabbin' about which place we 
were bound for ? I haven't seen all the 
soundings o' that afi:air clear yet, but I mean 
to. I ain't goiu' to be ''jammed in a clench 
like Jackson," for Jerrem nor nobody else.' 



72 ADAM AND EVE. 

Joan made no answer. She seemed to 
be engaged in turning her crock round, 
and while bending down she said : 

' Well, I should go after 'em, if I was 
you. They'm sure not to be very far off, 
and I Ml get tea ready while you'm gone.' 

Adam moved away. Somewhat reluc- 
tant to go, he lingered about the rooms for 
some time, making up his mind what he 
should do. He could not help being 
haunted by an idea that the two people he 
had seen standing were Eve and Jerrem. 
It was a suspicion which angered him 
beyond measure, and after once letting it 
come before him, it rankled so sorely that 
he determined to satisfy himself, and there- 
fore started off down the street, past the 
quay, and up by the steps. 

* Here, where be goin' to X called out a 
voice behind him. 

Without stopping, Adam turned his head. 



ADAM AND EVE, 



' Oh, Poll, is that you V he said. 

' Iss.' 

^ Have ye seen Eve pass this way ? I 
think she'd got Jerrem with her.' 

* 'S pose if I have,' said Poll, with whom 
Adam was no favourite ; ' they doesn't 
want you. You sta,y where you be now. 
I hates to see anybody a-spilein sport like 
that.' 

With no very pleasant remark on the 
old woman, Adam turned to go on. 

' Awh, you may rin !' she cried, ' but you 
woan't catch up they. They was bound 
for Nolan Point, and they's past there long 
afore now !' 

Then the two he had seen were they ! 
An indescribable feeling of jealousy stung 
Adam, and giving way to his temper in a 
volley of oaths against old Poll, he turned 
back, repassed her, and went towards 
home, while she stood 'enjoying his discom- 



ADAM AND EVE. 



fiture, laughing heartily at it as she 
called out : 

* I hears 'ee. Swear away ! I don't 
mind yer cusses, not I. Better hear they 
than be deafe !' 




CHAPTER IV. 




|OAN, you needn't expect me 
till you see me' — Joan turned 
quickly round, to see Adam 
at the door, looking angry and deter- 
mined — ^and you can tell Eve from me, 
that as it seems all one to her whatever 
companion she has, I don't see any need 
for forcing myself, where I am told I should 
only be one in the way.' 

' Adam !' — but the door was already 
slammed, and Joan again left in posses- 
sion of the kitchen. 



76 ADAM AND E VE, 

* Now there 'tis,' she said, in a tone of 
vexation, 'just as I thought : a reg lar piece 
o' work made all out o' nothin. Drabbit the 
maid ! if hers got the man her wants, why 
can't her study un a bit; but somehow 
there's bin a crooked stick lyin' in her path 
all day to-day; her's nipped about somethin', 
I'm positive sure o' that, and they all just 
come home too, and everythin', and now 
to be at daggers drawn with one 'nother — 
'tis terrible, 'tis.' 

Joan's reflections, interrupted by the 
necessary attention which her cakes and 
pasties made upon her, lasted over some 
considerable time, and they had not yet 
come to an end when two of the principal 
objects of them presented themselves before 
her. 

' Why, wherever have 'ee bin to f she 
said, peevishly. * Whatever made 'ee stay 
away like this for % actin' so foolish, when 



ADAM AND EVE. 



you knaws, both of 'ee, what a poor temper 
Adam's got, if anythin' goes contrary 
with 'un. 

Jerrem shruofo-ed his shoulders, while 
Eve, at once assuming an injured air for 
such an unmerited attack, said : * Really, 
Joan, I don't know what you mean ; old 
Poll Potter has just been telling us that 
Adam came flying and fuming up her way, 
wanting to know if she'd seen us, and then, 
when she said where we'd gone to, he used 
the most dreadful lano^uao^e to her ; I'm 
sure I don't know for what reason. He 
chose to go out without me this morning.' 

* But that was 'bout business,' said Joan. 

' Oh, business !' repeated Eve ; ' business 
is a very convenient word when you don't 
want to tell a person what your real errand 
is — not that I want to pry into Adam's 
secrets, far from it. He's quite welcome to 
keep what he likes from me, only I'd rather 



78 ADAM AND EVE. 

he wouldn't tell me half things. I like to 
know all or none.' 

Joan looked mystified, and Jerrem, 
seeing she did not know what to say, came 
to the rescue. 

^I'm sure I'm very vexed if I've been the 
cause of anything o' this, Eve,' he said, 
humbly. 

' You needn't be at all vexed — it's nothing 
at all to do with you : you asked me to go, 
and I said yes. If I hadn't wanted to go I 
should have said no. Anyone would think 
I'd committed a crime, instead of taking a 
simple walk, with no other fault than not 
happening to return home at the very same 
minute that it suited Adam to come back 
at.' 

' But how is it he's a seed you, if you 
haven't a' seed he,' said Joan, fairly puzzled 
by this game of cross-purpose ; ' he came 
home all right 'nuf, and then went off 



ADAM A AW EVE, 



to see whereabouts he could find 'ee to, and 
'bout quarter'n hour after, back he comes 
in a reg'lar pelt, and says : ^' You tell Eve," 
he says, " that I'm not goin' to foace myself 
where I'm told I shan't be wanted.' Awh> 
my dear, he'd seed 'ee somewheres,' she 
continued, in answer to Eve's shrug of 
bewilderment ; ' I could tell that so soon as 
iver I'd clapped eyes on 'un.' 

' And Where's he off to now V said Eve, 
determined to have an immediate settle- 
ment of her wrongs. 

' I can't tell ; he just flung they words at 
me and was gone.' 

Eve said no more, but with the apparent 
intention of taking off her hat went upstairs, 
while Joan, bidding Jerrem go and see if 
Uncle Zebedee was roused up yet, returned 
to her previous occupation of preparing the 
tea. When it was ready she called out : 

^ Come 'long, Eve !' but no answer was 



80 AVAM AND EVE. 

returned. ^ Tay's ready, my dear.' Still 
no reply. ' She can't ha' gone out agen f 
thought Joan, mounting the stairs to as- 
certain the cause of the silence, which was 
soon explained by the sight of Eve flung 
down on the bed with her head buried in 
the pillow. 

' Now, whatever be doin' this for V ex- 
claimed Joan, bending down and discover- 
ing that Eve was sobbing as if her heart 
would break. ^ Awh, doan't cry noAV, there's 
a dear, 't 'uU all come straight agen. Why 
now, you'll see Adam 'ull be back in no 
time. 'Twas only through bein' balked 
when he'd a come back o' purpose to take 
'ee out.' 

* How was I to know that V sobbed Eve. 

' No, o' course you didn't, and that's 
what I told 'un. But, lors ! 'tis in the 
nature o' men to be jealous o' one 'nother, 
and with Adam more partickler o' Jerrem, 



ADAM AND E VE. 81 

SO for the future you must humour 'im a 
bit, 'cos there's things atwixt they two you 
don't know nothin' of, and so can't allays 
tell when the shoe's pinchin' most.' 

' I often think whether Adam and me 
will be happy together,' said Eve, sitting 
up and drying her eyes. ' I'm willing to 
give in, but I won't be trampled upon.' 

* And he won't want to trample 'pon 'ee 
neither. Only you study un a bit, and 
you'll soon learn the measure o' Adam's 
foot. Why, 'tis only to see 'un lookin' at 
'ee to tell how he loves 'ee,' and Joan suc- 
cessfully kept down a rising sigh, as she 
added, ' Lor's, he wouldn't let a fly pitch 
'pon 'ee if he could help it.' 

^ If he'd seen us before he came in tirst, 
he'd have surely told you ^' said Eve. 

*Awh, he hadn't seen 'ee, then,' said 
Joan, ' 'cos, tho' he was a bit vexed, he 
wasn't in no temper. 'Twas after he went 

VOL. III. 46 



82 ADAM AND EVE. 



out the second time that he must have cast 
eyes on 'ee some way. Jerrem wasn't up 
to none of his nonsense, was he ?' she asked. 
' 'Cos I knaws what Jerrem is. He don't 
think no more o' givin' 'ee a kiss or that 
than he does o' noddin' his head or crookin' 
his elbaw, and if Adam caught un at that, 
it 'ud be enough for he.' 

Eve shook her head. 

^ Jerrem never takes none of those Uber- 
ties with me,' she said. 'He knows 1 
won't allow him to. The whole of the 
time we did nothing but talk and walk along 
till we came to a nice place, and then we 
stayed for a little while looking at the view 
together, and after that came back.' 

' 'Tis more than I can make out, then,' 
said Joan, * 'cos, though I wondered when 
you set off whether Adam would 'zactly 
relish your bein' with Jerrem, I never 
thought 'twould put un out like this.' 



ADAM AND EVE. 83 

' It makes me feel so miserable/ said 
Eve, trying to keep back her tears, * for 
oh, Joan T — and she threw her arms round 
Joan's neck — * I do love him very dearly.' 

' Iss, my dear, I knaws you do/ returned 
Joan, soothingly, ' and he loves you, too/ 

' Then why can't we always feel the 
same, Joan, and be comfortable and kind 
and pleasant to one another X 

' Oh lors ! that 'ud be a reg'lar milk 
and watter set-out o' it. Xo, so long as 
you don't carry on too far on the wan tack, 
I likes a bit of a breeze now and then : 
it freshens 'ee up and puts new life into 
'ee ; but here, come along down now, and 
when Adam comes back seem as if nothin' 
had happened, and p'r'aps, seein' you make 
so lio^ht of it, 'uU make un fors^et all 
about it,' 

So advised. Eve dried her eyes and 
smoothed down her ruffled appearance, and 

4G— 2 



84 ADAM AND EVE. 



in a short time joined the party below, 
which now included Uncle Zebedee, 
Barnabas Tadd, and Zeke Teague, who 
had brouo^ht word that the Hart had only 
that morning returned to Fowey, entirely 
iofnorant of the skirmish which had taken 
place between the Looe boats and the 
Lottery, and that though it was reported 
that the man shot had been shot dead, 
nothing was known for certain, as it 
seemed that the men of Looe station 
were not over anxious to have the thing 
talked about. 

' I should think they wasn't, neither,' 
chuckled Uncle Zebedee ; ' sneakin' 
cowardly lot; they was game enough whiles 
they was creepin' up behind; but, lors, 
so soon as us shawed our faces and they 
seed they'd got men to dale with there 
was another tale to tell, and no mistake. 
I much doubt whether or no wan amongst 



ADAM AND EVE. '^o 

'em had ever smelt powder afore our 
Jerrem here let 'em have a sniff o' his 
mixin' ; 'tis my belief, and I han't a got a 
doubt on the matter neither, that if he 
hadn't let fly when he did they'd ha' 
draw'd off and gone away boastin' that 
they'd got the best o' it.' 

* Well, and more's the pity you didn't 
let 'em, then,' said Joan. ' I would, I 
knaw. Safe hind's safe find, and you can 
never tell when fightin' begins where 'tis 
goin' to end to.' 

' It shouldn't ha' ended where it did if 
I'd had my way,' said Jerrem. 

' Awh, well ; there, never mind,' said old 
Zebedee. * You'll have a chance ao-en, 
never fear, and then we must make 'ee 
capen. How'd that plaze 'ee — eh 1' 

Jerrem's face bespoke his satisfaction. 

' Take care I don't hold 'ee to ver word/ 
he said, laughing. ' I've got witnesses, 



86 ADAM AND EVE. 



mind, to prove it — here's Barnabas here, 
and Zeke Teague, and they won't say me 
nay, I'll wager, will 'ee, lads ?' 

' Wa-all, bide a bit — bide a bit !' said 
Zebedee, winking in appreciation of this 
joke. ' There'll be two or three o' the 
oldsters drap in durin' the ebenin', and 
then us '11 have a bit of a jaw together on 
it, and weigh sides on the matter.' 

As Uncle Zebedee anticipated, the 
evening brought a goodly number of 
visitors, who, one after another, came 
dropping in, until the sitting-room was 
pretty well filled, and it was as much as 
Eve and Joan could manage to see that 
each one was comfortably seated and pro- 
vided for. 

There were the captains of the three 
vessels, with a portion of the crew of each, 
several men belonging to the place — all 
more or less mixed up with the ventures — 



ADA J/ AND E VE. 



and, of course, the crew of the Lottery, by 
no means yet tired of having their story 
listened to and their adventure discussed. 
Adam's absence was feh to be a great 
rehef, and each one inwardly voted it as a 
proof that Adam himself saw that he'd 
altogether made a missment, and gone 
nigh to damage the whole concern. Manv 
a jerk of the head, or the thumb, accom- 
panied a whisper that ' he'd a tooked his- 
self off,' and drew forth the response that 
' 'twas the proper line to pursoo ;' and 
feeling they had no fear of interruption, 
they resigned themselves to enjoyment 
and settled down to jollity, in the very midst 
of which Adam made his appearance ; but 
the time was passed when his presence or 
his absence could in any way affect them, 
and instead of the uncomfortable silence 
which at an earlier stage might have fallen 
upon the party, his entrance was now only 



88 ADAM AND EVE. 

the occasion of hard hits and rough jokes^ 
which Adam, seeing the influence under 
which they were made, tried to bear with 
all the temper he could command. 

' Don't 'ee take no notice of 'em/ said 
Joan, bending over him to set down some 
fresh glasses. ' They ain't worth yer 
anger, not one among 'em. I've kept Eve 
out of it so much as I could ; and, after 
now, there won't be no need for her 
to come in agen ; so you go outside 
there. Her's a waitin' to have a word 
with 'ee.' 

' Then wait she may,' said Adam. ' I'm 
goin' to stop where I am. Here, father !^ 
he cried. * Pass the liquor this way. 
Come, push the grog about ! Last come 
first served, you know.' 

The heartiness with which this was said 
caused considerable astonishment. 

' Iss, iss, lad,' said old Zebedee, his face 



ADAM AND EVE. 8^) 

glowing under the effects of hot punch and 
the efforts of hospitaUty. ' That's well 
said. Set-to with a will, and you'll catch us 
up yet; 

During the laughter called forth by this 
challenge, Joan took another opportunity of 
speaking. 

' Why, what be 'bout, Adam V she said, 
seeing how unhke his speech and action was 
to his usual self * Doan't 'ee go and cut 
off your naws to spite yer face, now ; Eve's 
close by here — her's as sorry as auything, 
her is ; her wouldn't ha' gone out for twenty 
pounds if herd knaw'd it.' 

' I wish you'd hold yer tongue/ said 
Adam ; ' I've told you I'm goin' to stop 
here ; be off with you, now.' 

But Joan, bent on striving to keep him 
from an excess to which she saw exaspera- 
tion was oroadino' him, made one more 
effort. 



yO ADAM AND EVE. 

' Awh, Adam !' she said, * do 'ee come 
now. Eve ' 

* Eve be ' 

But before the word had well escaped 
his lips Joan's hand was clapped over his 
mouth. Too late, for Eve had come up 
behind them, and as Adam turned his 
head to shake Joan off he found himself 
face to face before her, and the look of out- 
raged love she fixed upon him made his 
heart quail within him. What could he 
do, what should he say? Nothing now, 
for before he could gather up his senses 
she had passed him by and was gone. 

A sickening feeling came over Adam, 
and he could barely put his lips to the 
glass which, in order to avert attention, he 
had caught up and raised to his mouth. 
At a blow all the resolutions he had forced 
himself to were upset and scattered, for 
he had returned with the reckless determi- 



ADAM AND EVE. 91 

nation of plunging into whatever dissipa- 
tion chanced to be going on. 

He had roamed about, angry and tor- 
mented, until the climax of passion was 
succeeded by an overpowering sense of 
gloom, to get away from which he had 
determined to abandon himself, and 
flinching: all restraint aside, sink down to 
that level over which the better part of 
his nature had vainly tried to soar. 

But now, in the feeliiiQ; of deo^radation 
which Eve's eyes had flashed upou him, 
the grossness of these excesses came freshly 
before him, and the knowledge that even 
in thought he had entertained them made 
him feel lowered in his own eyes ; and if 
in his eyes, how must he look in hers. 

Without a movement, he knew every 
time that she entered the room ; he heard 
her exchange words with some of those 
present, applaud a song of Barnabas Todd's, 



92 ADAM AND EVE. 

answer a question of Uncle Zebedee's, and, 
sharpest thorn of all, stand behind Jerrem's 
chair, talking to him, Avhile some of the 
roughest hits were being made at his own 
mistaken judgment in holding back those- 
who were ready to have ' sunk the Looe 
boats and all aboard 'em.' 

In the anguish of his heart Adam could 
have cried aloud. It seemed to him that 
until now he had never tasted the bitter- 
ness of love nor smarted under the sharp' 
tooth of jealousy. There were lapses, when,, 
sending a covert look across the table, those 
around him faded away, and only Eve and 
Jerrem stood before him ; and while he 
gazed, a harsh, discordant laugh \vould 
break the spell, and starting, he would find 
that it was his own voice which had jarred 
upon his ear. His head seemed on fire,, 
his senses confused. Turning his eyes upon 
the tumbler of grog which he had poured 



ADAM AND EVE. 93 

:Out, he could hardly credit that it still stood 
.all but untasted before him. A noisy song 
with a rollickinor chorus was beino- suno-, 
.and for a moment Adam shut his eyes, 
trying to recollect himself — all in vain. 
Everything seemed jumbled and mixed 
to Of ether. 

Suddenly, in the midst of the clamour, a 
!noise outside was heard. The door was 
burst violently open, and as violently shut 
again by Jonathan, who, throwing himself 
with all his force against it, cried out : 

' They'm comin' — they'm after 'ee — close 
by — the sodjers — you'm trapped !' 

And exhausted and overcome by exer- 
tion and excitement, his tall form swayed 
to and fro, and then fell back in a death- 
like swoon upon the floor. 




CHAPTER Y. 




jOR an instant everyone seemed 
paralysed and transfixed in the 
position into which upon. Jona- 
than's entrance they had started. Then a 
sudden rush was made towards the door, 
Avhich several of the strongest blocked up, 
while Adam called vainly on them to stand 
aside, and give the chance of more air. 
Joan flew for water, and Jerrem dashed it 
over Jonathan. 

There was a minute of anxious watch- 
ing, and then slowly over Jonathan's pallid 



ADAM AND E VE. 95 

face the sio'ns of returnino' animation bes^an 

o o o 

to creep. 

'Now, stand back! — stand back from 
him do !' said Adam, fearing the effect 
of so many faces crowding near would 
only serve to further daze his scared 
senses. •' What is it, Jonathan, what is it, 
lad X he asked, kneeling down by him. 

Jonathan tried to rise, and Adam 
motioned for Barnabas Tadd to come and 
assist in getting him on his feet. 

' Now, sit down there,' said Adam, ' and 
put your lips to this, and then tell us 
what's up.' 

Jonathan cowered down as he threw a 
hasty glance round, the meaning of which 
was answered by a general — 

'You knaws all of us, Jonathan, don't 
'eer 

* Iss,' said Jonathan, breaking into a 
feeble laugh ; ' but somehows I'd a rinned 



m ADAM AND EVE. 



till I'd got 'em all as I fancied to me heels, 
close by.' 

* And Avhere are they, then ?' said Adam, 
seizing the opportunity of getting at the 
most important fact. 

' Comin' 'long t' roadway, man by man, 
straddled on to their horses' backs. They'm 
to take 'ee all, dead or livin', sarch by night 
or day. Some o' 'em is come all the 
ways fra Plymouth, vowin' and swearin' 
they'll have blid for blid ; and that if they 
can't pitch 'pon he who fired to kill their 
man, every sawl aboard the Lottery shall 
swing gallows high for un.' 

A volley of oaths ran through the room. 
Joan threw up her arms in despair, Eve 
groaned aloud. 

Suddenly there was a movement, as if 
some one was breaking from a detaining 
hand. 'Twas Jerrem, who, pushing for- 
ward, cried out : 



ADAM AND EVE, 97 

* Then I'll give myself up to wance ; no- 
body shan't suffer 'cos o' me. I did it, and 
I wasn't afeared to do it neither, and no 
more I ain't afeared to answer for it now.' 

The buzz which neofatived this offer, be- 
spoke the appreciation of Jerrem's mag- 
nanimity. 

Adam alone had taken no part in it ; 
turning, he said sternly : 

* Do we risk our lives together, then, to 
skulk off when danger offers, and leave 
one to suffer for all ? Let's have no more 
of such idle talk; while things promised 
to run smooth, you was welcome to the 
boast of havin' fired first shot, but now 
every man aboard fired it ; and let he who 
says he didn't stand out and say it now.' 

* Fair spoke, and good sense,' said the 
men. 

^Then off with you, each to the place 
he thinks safest. Jerrem and you, father, 
VOL. III. 47 



98 > ADAM AND EVE. 

must stay here. I shall go to the mill, and 
Jonathan, for the night, you'd best come 
along with me/ 

With little visible excitement, and but 
few words, the men began to depart — all 
of them more or less stupefied by the in- 
fluence of drink, which, combined with 
this unexpected dash to their hopes and 
overthrow of their boastings, seemed to 
rob them of all their energy. They were 
ready to do whatever they were asked, 
go wherever they were told, listen to all 
that was said; but anything beyond this 
was then impossible. They had no more 
power of deciding, proposing, arranging 
for themselves, than if they had been a 
flock of sheep warned that a ravenous 
wolf was near. 

The one necessary action which seemed 
to have laid hold upon them was that 
they must all solemnly shake hands, 



ADAM AND E VE, 99 

and this in many cases they did over 
and over again, repeating * each time, 
with a warning nod of the head : ^ Well, 
mate, 'tis a bad job o' it, this,' until some 
of the more collected felt it necessary to 
interfere, and urge their immediate de- 
parture ; then one by one they stole away, 
leaving the house in possession of its usual 
occupants. 

Adam had already been upstairs to get 
Uncle Zebedee — now utterly incapable of 
any thought for himself — safely placed in 
a secret closet, which was hollowed in the 
wall behind the bed. Turning to Jerrem 
as he came do^\m, he said : 

* You can manage to stow yourself away; 
only mind, do it at once, so that the house 
is got quiet before they've time to get' 
here.' 

* All right,' said Jerrem, doggedly, while 
Joan slid back the seat of the settle, turned 

47—2 



100 ADAM AND EVE. 

down a flap in the wall, and discovered 
the hole in which J errem was to lie con- 
cealed. 

' There ! — there ain't another hidin'- 
place like that in all Polperro/ she said. 
* They may send a whole reg'ment o' 
sodgers afore a man among 'em 'ull pitch 
on 'ee there, Jerrem.' 

* And that's the reason why I don't want 
to have it/ said Jerrem. ' I don't see 
why I'm to have the pick and choice, and 
why Adam's to go ofl" to where they've 
only got to search and find.' 

^ Well, but 'tis as he says,' urged Joan. 
' They may ha' got you in their eye 
already. Come, 'tis all settled now,' she 
continued persuasively ; so get 'longs in 
with 'ee, like a dear.' 

Jerrem o^ave a look round — Eve 
was busy clearing the table ; Adam was 
putting some tobacco into his pouch. He 



ADAM AND EVE. 101 

hesitated, then he made a step forward, 
then he drew back again, until at last, with 
visible effort, he said : 

' Come, give us yer hand, Adam V 

With no aflfectation of cordiality, Adam 
held out his hand. 

' Whatever comes, you've spoke up 
fair for me, and acted better than most 
would ha' done, seein' that I've let my 
tongue run a bit too fast 'bout you o' 
late.' 

' Oh, don't think I've done any more 
for you than I should ha' done for 
either one o' the others,' said Adam, not 
williug to accept a feather's weight of 
Jerrem's gratitude. ^ However/ he added, 
tr}ang to force himself into a greater 
show of graciousness, ' here's wishin' all 
may go well with you, as with all of 
us.' 

Not over-pleased with this cold recep- 



1 02 ADAM AND E VE. 

tion of his advances, Jerrem turned hastily 
round to Joan. 

' Here, let's have a kiss, Joan ?' he 
said. 

' Iss twenty, my dear, so long as you'll 
only be quick 'bout it.' 

' Eve r 

^ There, nonsense now !' exclaimed Joan, 
warned by an expression in Adam's face ; 
* there's no call for no leave-takin' with 
Eve, her '11 be here so well as you.' 

The words, well intentioned as they 
were, served as fuel to Adam's jealous 
fire, and for a moment he felt that it was 
impossible to go away and leave Jerrem 
behind ; but the next instant the very 
knowledge of that passing weakness was 
only urging him to greater self-command, 
although the effort it cost him gave a 
hardness to his voice and a coldness to his 
manner. One tender word, and his resolve 



ADAM AND EVE. 103 

would be gone — one soft emotion, and to 
go would be impossible. 

Eve, on her part, with all her love re- 
awakened, her fears excited, and her 
imagination sharpened, was w^rought up 
to a pitch of emotion which each moment 
grew more and more beyond her con- 
trol. In her efforts to keep calm, she 
busied herself in clearing the table and 
moving to and fro the chairs, all the time 
keenly alive to the fact that Joan was 
hovering about Adam, suggesting com- 
forts, supplying resources, and pouring 
out a torrent of wordy hopes and fears. 
Surely Adam would ask — Joan would 
think to give them one moment to them- 
selves ? If not, she would demand it ; 
but before she could speak, boom on her 
heart came Adam's 'Good-bye, Joan.' — 
' Good-bye !' What can she do now 1 How 
bear this terrible parting ? In her efforts 



104 ADAM AND EVE. 

to control the desire to give vent to her 
agony, her powers of endurance utterly 
gave way. A rushing sound, as of many 
waters, came gurgling in her ears, dulling 
the voice of some one who spoke from 
far off. 

^ What are they saying '?' In vain she 
tried to catch the words — to speak — to 
move ; then gathering up all her strength, 
with a piercing cry she tried to break the 
spell. The room reeled, the ground 
beneath her gave way, a hundred voices 
shrieked good-bye, and with their clamour 
ringing in her ears, Eve's spirit went down 
into silence and darkness. Another 
minute and she was again alive to all 
her misery ; Joan was kneeling beside her, 
the tears streaming from her eyes. 

^What is it? Where's Adam?' ex- 
claimed Eve, starting up. 

' Gone r said Joan ; ^ he said 'twas 



ADAM AND E VE. 105 

better to, 'fore you corned to yourself 
agen/ 

' Gone ! and never said a word ?' she 
cried. * Gone ! Oh, Joan, how could he 
— how could he ?' 

*What would 'ee have un do, then?' 
said Joan, sharply ; ' bide dallyin' here to 
be took by the hounds o' sodgers that's 
marchin' 'pon us all ? that's fine love, I 
will say.' But suddenly a noise outside 
made them both start, and stand listening 
with beatino' hearts until all ao-ain was 
still and quiet ; then Joan's quick-roused 
anger failed her, and repenting her sharp 
speech, she threw her arms round Eve's 
neck, crying : ' Awh, Eve, don't 'ee lets 
you and me set 'bout quarrellin', my dear, 
for if sorrow ain't a-drawin' nigh, my name's 
not Joan Hocken. I never before felt 
the same way as I do to-night. My spirits 
is gived way ; my heart seems to have 



106 ADAM AND E VE. 

failed flat down and died within me, and, 
be doing what I may, there keeps soundin' 
in my ears a nickety -knock like the tap- 
pin' on a coffin-lid.' 




CHAPTEE YL 




INCE the night on which Jona- 
than's arrival had j)hinged the 
party assembled at Zebedee 
Pascal's into such dismay, a week had 
passed by — seven days and nights of terror 
and confusion. 

The determined manner in which the 
Government authorities traced out each 
clue and tracked every scent struck terror 
into the stoutest hearts, and men who had 
never before shrunk from danger in any 
open form now feared to show their faces. 



108 ADAM AND EVE. 

dared not sleep in their own houses, nor, 
except by stealth, visit their own families. 
At dead of night, as well as in the blaze 
of day, stealthy descents would be made 
upon the place — the houses surrounded, 
and strict search made. One hour the 
streets would be deserted, the next every 
corner bristled with rude soldiery, flinging 
insults and imprecations on the feeble old 
men and defenceless women who, panic- 
stricken, stood about vainly endeavouring 
to seem at their ease, and keep up a show 
of indifference. 

One of the first acts had been to seize 
the Lottery J and orders had been issued to 
arrest all or any of her crew, wherever 
they might be found; but as yet no 
trace of them had been discovered ; Jerrem 
and Uncle Zebedee still lay concealed 
within the house, and Adam at the mill, 
crouched beneath corn-bins, lay covered 



ADAM AND EVE, 109 

by sacks and grain, while the tramp of the 
soldiers sounded in his ears, or the ring of 
their voices set his stout heart quaking 
with fear of discovery. To men whose 
lives had been spent out of doors, with the 
free air of heaven and the fresh salt breeze 
of the sea constantly sweeping over them, 
toil and hardship were pastimes, compared 
to this inactivity, and it was little to be 
wondered at, that for one and all the 
single solace left seemed drink — drink 
deadened their restlessness, benumbed their 
energies, made them forget their dangers, 
sleep through their durance. So that even 
Adam could not always hold out against a 
solace which helped to shorten the frightful 
monotony of those weary days, dragged 
out for the most time in solitude and dark- 
ness. With no occupation, no resources, 
no companion, ever dwelling on self and 
viewing each action, past and present, by 



1 10 AJDAM AND E VE, 

the light of an exaggerated (often a dis- 
torted) vision, Adam grew irritable, morose, 
suspicious. 

Why hadn't Joan come? Surely there 

couldn't be anything to keep Eve awayl 

and if so, might they not send a letter, 

a message, or some token to show him 

that he was still in their thoughts ? In 

vain did Mrs. Tucker urge the necessity of 

a caution hitherto unknown ; in vain did 

she repeat the stories brought of footsteps 

dogged, and houses watched, so that their 

inmates dare not run the smallest risk, for 

fear of its leading to detection. Adam 

turned a deaf ear to all she said, sinking at 

last down to the conclusion that he could 

endure such suspense no longer, and come 

what might, must the next day steal back 

home, and satisfy himself how things were 

going on. The only concession to her 

better judgment which Mrs. Tucker could 



ADAM AND EVE. Ill 

gain, was his promise to wait until she had 
been in to Polperro to reconnoitre ; for 
though, from having seen a party of soldiers 
pass that morning, they knew some of the 
troop had left, it was impossible to say 
how many remained behind, nor whether 
they had received fresh strength from the 
opposite direction. 

' I shan't give no more o' they than I sees 
the wisdom of/ reflected Mrs. Tucker, as 
primed with questions to ask Joan, and 
messages to give to Eve, she securely 
fastened the doors preparatory to her 
departure. ' If I was to tell up such talk 
to Eve, her'd be piping off here next 
minit, or else sendin' back a pack o' silly 
speeches that ud' make Adam mazed 
to go to she. 'Tis wonderful how took up he 
is with a maid he knows so little of But 
there, 'tis the same with all the men, I 
b'lieve — tickle their eye, and good-bye to 



112 ADAM AND EVE. 

their judgment.' And giving the outer gate 
a shake to assure herself that it could not 
be opened without a preparatory warning 
to those within, Mrs. Tucker turned 
away and out into the road. 

A natural tendency to be engrossed by 
personal interests, together with a life of 
narrowed circumstances, had somewhat 
blunted the acuteness of Mrs. Tuckers 
impressionable sensibihties ; yet she could 
not but be struck at the change these last 
two weeks had wrought in the aspect of the 
place. The houses, wont to stand open so 
that friendly greetings might be exchanged, 
were now closed and shut; the blinds of 
most of the windows were drawn down ; 
the streets, usually thronged with idlers, 
were all but deserted; the few shops empty 
of wares and of customers. Calling to 
her recollection the frequent prophetic 
warnings she had indulged in about these 



ADAM AND EVE. 113 

evil days to come, Mrs. Tucker's heart 
smote her. 

' Surely Providence had never taken her 
at her word, and really brought a judg- 
ment on the place ? If so, seeing her own 
kith and kin would be amongst the most to 
suffer, it had read a very wrong meaning in 
her words ; for it stood to reason, when 
folks talked serious-like, they didn't always 
stop to measure what they said, and if a 
text or two o' Scripture sounded seemly, 
'twas fitted in to help their speech out with, 
not to be pulled abroad to seek the down- 
right meanin' o' each word.' 

Subdued and oppressed by these and like 
reflections, Mrs. Tucker reached Uncle 
Zebedee's house, inside which the change 
wrought was in keeping with the external 
sadness. Both girls looked harassed and 
careworn : Joan, now that there was no 
further occasion for that display of spirit 

VOL. HI. 48 



1 1 4 ADAM AND E VE, 

and bravado which before the soldiers she 
had successfully contrived to maintain, 
utterly broken down and apathetically de- 
jected ; Eve, unable to enter into all the 
difficulties, or sympathise in the universal 
danger, ill at ease with herself, and irritable 
with all around her. In her anxiety to 
hear about Adam — what message he had 
sent, and whether she could not go to see 
him — she had barely patience to listen to 
Mrs. Tucker's roundabout details and 
lugubrious lamentations, and choosing a 
very inopportune moment, she broke out 
with : 

' What message has Adam sent, Mrs. 
Tucker ? He's sent a message to me, I'm 
sure. I know he must have !' 

' Awh, well, if you knaws, you don't 
want to be told, then,' snorted Mrs. 
Tucker, ill pleased at having her demands 
upon sympathy put to such sudden flight. 



ADAM AND EVE. 115 

' Though don't you think, Eve, that Adam 
hasn't got somethin' else to think of than 
sendin' love-messages and nonsense o' that 
sort ? He's a good deal too much took 
up 'bout the trouble we'm all in for that. 
He hoped you was all well, and keepin' 
yer spirits up, Joan.' 

* Poor sawl !' sighed Joan ; ' I 'spects 
he finds that's more than he can do.' 

' Ah, you may well say that,' replied 
Mrs. Tucker, casting a troubled look 
towards her daughter's altered face. 
'Adam's doin' purtty much the same 
as you be, Joan — frettin' his insides 
out.' 

* He's fretting, then V gasped Eve^ 
managing to get the words past the great 
lump which seemed to choke her further 
utterance. 

' Frettin V repeated Mrs. Tucker, with 
severity ; ' but there, why should I V she 

48—2 



1 1 6 ADAM AND E VE. 

added, as if blaming lier sense of injury, 
^ I keeps forgettin' that, compared with 
Joan, Eve, yoii'm nothin' but a stranger, 
as you may say ; and, though I dare say 
I shan't get your thanks for saying it, 
still Adam could tell 'ee so well as me, 
that fresh faces is all very well in fair 
weather, but in times of trouble they 
counts for very little aside o' they who's 
bin brought up from the same cradle, you 
may say.' 

Eve's swelling heart could bear no more. 
This sense of being set aside, and looked 
on as a stranger, was a gall which of late 
she had been frequently called upon to 
endure; but to have it hinted at that Adam 
could share in this feeling towards her — 
oh, it was too much ; and rising hastily, 
she turned to run upstairs. 

'Now there's no call to fly off in no 
tantrums, Eve,' said Mrs. Tucker; 'so 



ADAM AND E VE. 1 1 7 

just sit down now and listen to what else 
IVe got to say.' 

But Eve's outraofed love could hide itself 
no longer ; to answer Joan's mother with 
anything like temper was impossible, and 
knowing this, her only refuge was in 
flight. 

' I don't want to hear any more you may 
have to say, Mrs. Tucker ;' and though 
Eve managed to keep under the sharpness 
of her voice, she could not control the in- 
dignant expression of her face, which Mrs. 
Tucker fully appreciating, she speeded her 
departure by the inspiriting prediction, 
that if Eve didn't sup sorrow by the spoon- 
ful before her hair was grey, her name 
wasn't Ann Tucker. 

'Awh, don't 'ee say that,' said Joan. 
*You'm over-crabbit with her, mother; 
and her only wantin to hear some word 
that Adam had sent to her own self 



118 ADAM AND EVE. 

' But^ mercy 'pon us, her must give me 
time to fetch my breath !' exclainied Mrs. 
Tucker, indignantly ; * and I fo'ced to fly 
off as I did, for fear that Adam should 
forestall me, and go doin' somethin 
foohsh r 

' He ain't wantin' to come home ?' said 
Joan, hurriedly. 

' Iss, but he is though. And when us 
see they sodgers go past, I thought no 
other than he'd a set off then and there. 
As I said to un, 'tis true you knows o' 
they that's gone, but how can 'ee tell how 
many's left behind '?' 

Joan shook her head. 

' They'm all off,' she said ; * every man 
of 'em's gone : but for all that, Adam 
mustn't come anighst us, or show his face 
in the place* 'Tis held everywheres that 
this move is nothin' but a decoy to get 
the men out o' hidin ; and that done, 



ADAM AND EVE. 119 

back they'll all come and drop down on 
'em/ 

' Well, then, I'd best go back to wanst !' 
cried Mrs. Tucker, starting up, ' and try 
and put a stop to his comin', tho' whether 
he'll pay any heed to what I say, is more 
than I'll answer for.' 

* Tell un,' said Joan, ' that for all our 
sakes he mustn't come ; and say that I've 
had word that Jonathan's lurk in' nigh 
about here some place, so I reckon there's 
somethin' up, and what it is he shall know 
so soon as I can send word to un ; say 
iliat ouQfht to tell un 't isn't safe to stir, 
'cos he knows that Jonathan would sooner 
have orone to he than to either wan here.' 

' Well, I'll tell un all you tells me to,' 
said Mrs. Tucker, with a somewhat hope- 
less expression, ' but you knaw what Adam 
is, Joan, when he fixes his mind on any- 
thin' ; and I've had the works o' the warld 



1 20 ADAM AND E VE. 

to keep un from comin' already — he takes 
such fancies about 'ee all as you never did. 
I declare if I didn't knaw that pVaps he's 
a had more liquor than he's used to take o* 
timeSj I should ha' fancied un light-headed- 
like.' 

' And so he'll be if you gives much 
sperrit to un, mother,' said Joan, anxiously ; 
* 'tis sure to stir his temper up. But there,' 
she added despondingly, '■ what can any- 
body do % 'tis all they ha' got to fly to. 
There's Jerrem at it fro' mornin' to night ; 
and as for uncle, dear saul, he's as happy as 
a clam at high watter.' 

* Iss ; I reckon,' said Mrs. Tucker, ' it 
don't never matter much what goes wrong, 
so long as uncle gets his fill o' drink. I've 
said scores o' times uncle's joy 'ud never 
run dry so long as liquor lasted.' 

' Ah, well !' said Joan, ^ I don't knaw 
what us should ha' done if there'd ha' bin 



' ADAAf AND E VE. 121 

no drink to give 'em ; they'd ha' bin more 
than Eve and me could manage, I can tell 
'ee. Nobody but our own selves, mother, 
will ever knaw what us two maidens have 
had to go through.' 

' You've often liad my thoughts with 'ee, 
Joan,' said Mrs. Tucker, her eyes dimmed 
by a rush of motherly sympath}^ for all the 
girls must have suffered ; ' and you can 
tell Eve (for her'll take it better from you 
than from me) that Adam's allays a-thinkin' 
of her, and begged and prayed that she 
wudn't forget un.' 

' No fear o' that,' said Joan, anxious 
that her mother should depart ; ' and mind 
now you say, no matter w^hat time 'tis, 
directly I's seen Jonathan and knaws 'tis 
safe for we, somebody shall bring un word 
to come back, for Eve and me's longin' to 
have a sight of un.' 

Charged with these messages Mrs. 



122 ADAM AND EVE. 

Tucker hastened back to the mill, where 
all had gone well since her departure, and 
where she found Adam more tractable and 
reasonable than she had had reason to anti- 
cipate. He listened to all Joan's messages, 
agreed with her suspicions, and seemed 
contented to abide by her decision. The 
jolain unvarnished statement which Mrs. 
Tucker gave of the misery and gloom 
spread over the place affected him visibly, 
and her account of the two girls, and the 
alteration she had seen in them, did not 
tend to dispel his emotion. 

' As for Joan,' she said, letting a tear 
escape and trickle down her cheek, ''tis 
heart-breakin' to look at her. Her's terrible 
wrapped up in you, Adam, is Joan ; more 
than, as her mother, I cares for her to awn 
to, seein' how you'm situated with Eve.' 

* Oh, Eve never made no difference 
'twixt us two,' said Adam. Then, after a 



ADAM AND EVE. 123 

pause, he asked, ' Didn't Eve give you no 
word to give to me X 

' Well, no,' said Mrs. Tucker ; then, with 
the determination to deal fairly, she added 
quickly, * but her was full o' questions 
about 'ee, and that 'fore I'd time to draw 
breath inside the place.' Adam w^as silent, 
and Mrs. Tucker, considering the necessity 
for further explanation removed by the 
compromise she had made, continued, 
^ You see, what with Jerrem and uncle, and 
the drink that goes on, they two poor 
maidens is kept pretty much on the go ; 
and Eve, never bein used to no such ways, 
seems terrible harried by it all.' 

' Harried !' repeated Adam, wdth ill 
suppressed bitterness, ^ and well she may 
be ; still I should ha' thought she might 
have managed to send, if 'twas no more 
than a word back to me.' 




CHAPTEK VII. 




NDEK the plea that, notwith- 
standing the lateness of the 
hour, Jonathan might stir 
possibly put in an appearance, Adam 
lingered in his aunt's cheerful-looking 
kitchen until after the clock had struck 
eleven; then he very reluctantly got up, 
and, bidding Mrs. Tucker and Sammy 
good-night, betook himself to the mill- 
house, in which, with regard to his greater 
safety, a bed had been made up for him. 
Adam felt that, court it as he might. 



ADAM AND EVE. 125 

sleep was very far from his eyes, and 
that, compared to his own society, and 
the torment of thought which harassed 
and racked him each time he found him- 
self alone, even Sammy Tucker's com- 
pany was a boon to be grateful for. 
There were times, during these hours of 
dreary loneliness, when Adam's whole 
nature seemed submerged by the billows 
of love ; cruel waves, which would toss 
him hither and thither, making sport of 
his hapless condition, to strand him at 
length on the quicksands of fear, where a 
thousand terrible alarms would seize him, 
and fill him with dread as to how these 
disasters might end. What would become 
of him ? how would it fare with Eve and 
himself ? where could they go ? what 
could they do ? Questions ever swallowed 
up by the constantly recurring all-im- 
portant bewilderment as to what could 



126 ADAM AND EVE. 

possibly have brought about this dire 
disaster. 

On this night Adam's thoughts were 
more than usually engrossed by Eve ; her 
form seemed constantly before him, dis- 
tracting him with images as tempting and 
unsatisfying as is the desert spring, with 
which desire mocks the thirst of the faint- 
ing traveller : at length that relaxation of 
strenofth, which in sterner natures takes 
the place of tears, subdued Adam, a 
softened feeling crept over him, and shift- 
ing his position, so that he might rest his 
arms against the corn -bin near, a deep- 
drawn sigh escaped him. 

' Hist r Adam started at the sound, and 
without moving, turned his head and looked 
rapidly about him. Nothing was to be seen ; 
with the exception of the small radius round 
the lantern, all was darkness and gloom. 

' Hist !' was repeated, and this time 



ADAM AXD EVE. 127 

there was no more doubt but that the 
sound came from some one close by. A 
clammy sweat stood on Adam's forehead, 
his tongue felt dry, and so powerless that 
it needed an effort to force it to move. 

* Who's there X he said. 
' 'Tis me — Jonathan.' 

Adam caught up the lantern, and turning 
it in the direction whence the voice came, 
found to his relief that the rays fell upon 
Jonathan's face. 

* Odds rot it, lad !' he exclaimed, ' but 
you've gived me a turn ! How the deuce 
did you get in here, and why didn't ye 
come inside to the house over there V 

' I've a bin scrooged down 'tween these 
'ere sacks for ever so long,' said Jonathan, 
trying to stretch out his cramped limbs ; * I 
reckon I've had a bit o' a nap too, for the 
time ha'n't a took long in goin', and when 
I fust come 'twasn't altogether dark.' 



1 28 ADAM AND E VE. 

' 'Tis close on the stroke o' twelve now/ 
said Adam. ' But come, what news, eh % 
Have ye got hold o' anything yet % Are 
they devils off for good ? Is that what 
you've come to tell me V 

' Iss ; they's off this time, I fancy/ said 
Jonathan ; ' but 'twasn't that broffed me, 
though I should ha comed to tell 'ee o' 
that too.' 

' No ! what is it then ?' demanded Adam 
impatiently, turning the light so that he 
could get a better command of Jonathan's 
face. 

' 'Twas 'cos o' this,' said Jonathan, his 
voice dropping to a whisper, so that, though 
the words were trembling on his lips, his 
agitation and excitement almost prevented 
their utterance ; ^ I've found it out — all of it 
— who bio wed the gaff 'pon us.' 

Adam started forward ; his face all but 
touched Jonathan's, and an expression 



ADAM AND E VE. 1 20 

of terrible eagerness came into bis 
eyes. 

' 'T^Yas she !' hissed Jonathan. ^ She — 
her from London — Eve !' but before the 
name was ^Yell uttered, Adam had thro\yn 
himself upon him and was grasping at his 
throat as if to throttle him ; while a volley 
of imprecations poured from his mouth, 
denouncing the base lie which Jonathan 
had dared to utter. A moment more, and 
this fit of impotent rage over, he flung 
him violently ofl* and stood for a moment 
trying to bring back his senses ; but the 
succession of circumstances had been too 
much for him — his head swam round, his 
knees shook under him, and he had to 
grasp hold of a beam near to steady him- 
self. 

' What for do 'ee sarve me like that 
then f muttered Jonathan. *I ain't a-tellin' 
'ee no more than I've a-heerd and what's 

VOL. III. 49 



130 ADAM AND EVE. 

the truth. Her name's all over the place/ 
he went on, forgetful of the recent outburst, 
and warming with his narration. ^ Her's 
a reg'lar bad wan — her s a-carr'ed on with 
a sodger chap so well as with Jerrem — 
hers a ' 

^ By the living Lord, if you speak another 
word I'll be your death !' exclaimed 
Adam. 

' Wa-al, and so you may,' exclaimed 
Jonathan doggedly, * if so be you'll lave 
me bide 'til I'se seed the end o' she. 
"Why, what do 'ee mane then ?' he cried, a 
sudden suspicion throwing a light on 
Adam's storm of indignation, ' Her bain't 
nawthin' to you, her's Jerrem's maid — her 
bain't your maid % Why,' he added, find- 
ing that Adam didn't speak, * 'twas 
through the letter I carr'ed from he that 
her'd got it to blab about ; I wishes my 
hand had bin struck off' — and he dashed 



ADAM AND EVE. 131 

it violently against the wooden bin — * afore 
I'd touched his letter or his money/ 

' What letter V gasped Adam. 

' Wa-all, I knaws you said I warn't to 
take neither wan ; but J errem he coaxes 
and persuades, and says you ain't to knaw 
nawthin' about it, and 'tain't nawthin 
in it, only 'cos he'd a got a letter fra' 
she to Guernsey, and this was t'answer ; 
and then I knawed, 'cos I seed em, 
that they was sweetheartin and that, 
and ' 

' Did you give her that letter V said 
Adam, and the sound of his voice was so 
strange that Jonathan shrank back and 
cowered close to the wall. 

' Iss, I did/ he faltered ; ' leastwise I 
gived un to Joan, but t'other wan had the 
radin' in it.' 

There was a pause, during which Adam 
stood stunned, feeling that everything was 

49—2 



132 ADAM AND EVE. 

crumbling and giving way beneath him, that 
he had no longer anything to live for, 
anything to hope, anything to fear. As one 
after another, each former bare suggestion 
of artifice now passed before him clothed 
in the raiment of certain deceit, he made a 
desperate clutch at the most improbable, 
in the wild hope that one falsehood at 
least might afford him some ray of light, 
however feeble, to dispel the horrors of 
this terrible darkness. 

* And after she'd got the letter,' he said, 
•' what — what about the rest ?' 

'- Why ' twas this way,' cried Jonathan, 
his eyes rekindling in his eagerness to tell 
the story, ' somebody dropped a bit of 
paper into the rendevoos winder, with 
writin' 'pon it to say when and where they'd 
find the Lottery to. Who 'twas did it, 
none knaws for cartain ; but the talk's got 
abroad 'twas a seroreant there, 'cos he'd a bin 



ADAM AND EVE. 133 

brao^ofin' aforeliand that he'd o-ot a watch- 
sale, and that o' her n.' 

' Her'n !' echoed Adam. 

' Iss, o' Eve's. And he's allays a-showin 
of it off, he is ; and when they axes un ques- 
tions he doan't answer, but he dangles the 
sale afront of 'em and says, "What d'ee 
think," he says ; and now he makes his brag 
that he shall hab the maid yet, while her 
man's a-dancin' gallus-high a top o' Tyburn 
tree.' 

The blood rushed up into Adam's face, 
so that each vein stood a separate cord of 
swollen bursting rage. 

* They wasn't a-manin' you, ye knaw,' said 
Jonathan ; * 'twar Jerrem — her's played 
un false, I reckon. Awh !' and he gave a 
fiendish chuckle, ^ but us'll pay her out 
for't, woan't us, eh ? Awnly you give to me 
the ticklin' o' her ozel-pipe,* and he made a 
movement of his bony fingers that con- 



134 ADAM AND EVE. 

veyed such a hideous embodiment of his 
meaning, that Adam, overcome by horror, 
threw up his arms with a terrible cry to 
heaven, and falHng prone he let the 
bitterness of death pass over the love that 
had so late lain warm at his heart ; while 
Jonathan crouched down, trembling and 
awe stricken by the sight of emotion which, 
though he could not comprehend nor account 
for, stirred in him the sympathetic uneasi- 
ness of a dumb animal. Afraid to move 
or speak, he remained watching Adam's 
bent figure, until his shallow brain, in- 
capable of any sustained concentration of 
thought, wandered off to other interests, 
from which he was recalled by a noise, and 
looking up he saw that Adam had raised 
himself and was wiping his face with his 
liandkerchief Did he feel so hot, then ? 
No, it must be that he felt cold, for he 
shivered and his teeth seemed to chatter 



ADAM AND EVE, 135 



as he told Jonathan to stoop down by the 
side there, and hand him up a jar and a 
glass that he would find ; and this got, 
Adam poured out some of its contents, and 
after tossing it off, told Jonathan to take 
the jar and help himself; for, as nothing 
could be done until daylight, they might 
as well lie down and try and get some 
sleep. Jonathan's relish for spirit once 
excited, he made himself tolerably free of 
the permission, and before long had helped 
himself to such purpose that, stretched in a 
heavy sleep, unless some one roused him 
he w^as not likely to awake for some hours 
to come. 

Then Adam got up, and with cautious 
movements stole down the ladder, undid 
the small hatch- door which opened out on 
the mill-stream, fastened it after him, and 
leaping across, stood for a few moments 
askino' himself what he had come out to 



1 3G ADAM AND E VE, 

do. He didn't know, for as yet, in the 
tumult of jealousy and revenge, there was 
no outlet, no gap by which he might drain 
off any portion of that passionate fire 
which was rapidly destroying and consum- 
ing all his softer feelings. The story 
which Jonathan had brought of the be- 
trayal to the sergeant, the fellow's boast- 
ings, and his possession of the seal, Adam 
treated as an idle tale, its possibility 
vanquished by his conviction that Eve 
could have had no share in it. It was 
the letter from Jerrem which was the 
damnatory proof in Adam's eyes, the 
proof by which he judged and condemned 
her ; for had not he himself seen and won- 
dered at Jerrem's anxiety to go to 
Guernsey, his elation at finding a letter 
waiting him, his display of wishing to be 
seen secretly reading it, and now his ulti- 



ADAM AND EVE. 137 

mate betrayal of them by sending an 
answer to it ? 

As for Jerrem, oh I he would deal with 
him as with a dog, and quickly send him to 
that fate he so richly deserved. It was 
not against Jerrem that the depths of his 
bitterness welled over : as the strength 
of his love, so ran his hate ; and this all 
turned to one direction, and that direction 
pointed towards Eve. 

He must see her, stand face to face with 
her, smite her with reproaches, heap 
upon her curses^ show her how he could 
trample on her love, and fling her back 
her perjured vows — and then '? This done, 
what was there left ? From Jerrem he 
could free himself. A word, a blow, and 
all would be over ; but how with her ? 
True, he could kill the visible Eve with his 
own hands ; but the Eve who lived in his 
love, would she not live there still ? Aye ! 



1 38 ADAM AND E VE. 

and though he flung that body, which 
could court the gaze of other eyes than his, 
full fathoms deep, the fair image which 
dwelt before him would still remain pre- 
sent to his vision. So that, do what he 
would, Eve would live, must live. Live ! 
Crushing down on that thought came the 
terrible consequences which might come of 
Jonathan's tale being told — a tale so 
coloured with all their bitterest prejudices 
that it was certain to be greedily listened 
to ; and in the storm of angry passion it 
would rouse, everything else would be 
swallowed up by resentment against Eve's 
baseness, and the fire once kindled, what 
would come of it ? 

The picture which Adam's heated 
imagination conjured up turned him hot 
and cold ; an agony of fear crept over him ; 
his heart sickened and grew faint within 
him, and the hands, which but a few 



ADAM AND E VE. 1 3[> 



minutes before had longed to be steeped 
in her blood, now trembled and shook with 
nervous dread lest a finger of harm should 
be laid upon her. 

These and a hundred visions more or 
less wild coursed through Adam's brain, as 
his feet took their swift way towards Pol- 
perro — not keeping along the open road, 
but taking a path which — -only known to 
the inhabitants — would bring him down 
almost in front of his own house. 

The night was dark, the sky lowering 
and cloudy. Not a sound was to be heard, 
not a soul had he seen, and already Adam 
was discussing with himself how best, 
without making an alarm, he should awaken 
Joan and obtain admittance. Usually bars 
and bolts were unknown, doors were left 
unfastened, windows often open ; but now 
all would be securely shut, and he would 
have to rely on the possibility of his signal 



1 40 ADAM AND E VE. 

being heard by some one who might chance 
to be on the watch. 

Suddenly a noise fell upon his ear. 
Surely he heard the sound of footsteps and 
the hum of voices ! It could never be that 
the surprise they deemed a possibility had 
turned out a certainty ! Adam crouched 
down, and under shadow of the wall glided 
silently along until he came opposite the 
corner where the house stood. It was as 
he feared. There was no further doubt. 
The shutters were flung back, the door 
was half open, and round it, easing their 
tired limbs as best they might, stood 
crowded together a dozen men, the portion 
of a party who had evidently spread them- 
selves about the place. 

Fortunately for Adam, the steps which 
led up to the wooden orrel, or balcony — at 
that time a common adornment to the Pol- 
perro houses — afforded him a tolerably safe 



ADAM AND EVE. 141 

retreat ; and screened here, he remained, a 
silent watcher, hearing only a confused 
murmur and seeino^ nothino: save an occa- 
sional movement, as one and the other 
changed posts and passed in and out of the 
opposite door. At length a general parley 
seemed to take place, the men fell into rank, 
and at a slow pace moved off down the 
street in the direction of the quay. Adam 
looked cautiously out. The door was now 
closed. Dare he open it % Might he not 
find that a sentinel had been left behind ? 
Hovi^ about the other door % The chances 
against it were as bad. The only possible 
way of ingress was by a shutter in the 
wall, which overlooked the brook and 
communicated with the hiding-place in 
which his father lay secreted. This shutter 
had been little used since the days of press- 
gangs. It was painted in so exact an 
imitation of the slated house wall as to defy 



1 42 ADAM AND E VE. 

detection, and to mark the spot to the 
initiated eye, a root of house-leek projected 
out below, and served to further screen the 
opening from view. The contrivance of 
this shutter-entrance was well known to 
Adam, and the mode of reaching it familiar 
to him ; therefore, if he could but elude 
observation he was certain of success. 

The plan once decided on, he began 
putting it into execution ; and, although it 
seemed half a lifetime to him, but very few 
minutes had elapsed before he had crossed 
the road, ran waist-high into the brook, 
scaled the wall, and scrambled down almost 
on top of old Zebedee, who, stupefied by 
continual drink, sleep, and this constant 
confinement, took the surprise in a wonder- 
fully calm manner. 

' Hist, father ! 'tis only me — Adam !' 
' A' right ! a' right !' stammered Zebedee, 
too dazed to take in the whole matter at 



ADAM AND EVE, 143 

once. ' What is it lad, eh ? They darned 
galoots han't a-tracked 'ee, have 'em ? By 
the hooky ! but they'm givin' 't us hot and 
strong this time, Adam ; they was trampin' 
'bout inside here a minit agone, tryin' to 
keep our sperrits up by a-rattlin' the bilboes 
in our ears. Why, however did 'ee dodge 
'em— eh ? What's the manin' o' it all V 

^ I thought they was gone,' said Adam, 
^so I came down to see how you were all 
getting on here.' 

' Iss, iss, sure ; wa-al, all right, I s'pose, 
but I ha'n't abin let outside much ; Joan 
won't have it, ye knaw. Poor Joan !' he 
sighed, ' hers terrible moody-hearted 'bout 
't all — and so's Eve too. I never see'd 
maids take on as they'm doin' ; but there, 
I reckon 'twill soon be put a end to now.' 

' How so V said Adam. 

* Wa-al, you mustn't knaw, down below, 
more than you'm tawld,' said the old man, 



144 ADAM AND EVE. 

with a significant wink and a jerk of his 
head, ' but Jerrem he let me into it this 
ebenin' when he rinned up to see me for a 
bit. Seems one o' they sodger chaps is 
car 'in' on with Eve, and Jerrem's settin*^ 
her on to rig un up so that her'll get un 
not to see what 'tain't maned for un to 
look at.' 

' Well r said Adam. 

' Iss,' said Zebedee, ^ but will it be well ? 

that's what I keeps axin' of un. He's cock 

J. 

sure, sartain, that they can manage it all. 
He's sick, he says, o' all this skulkin', and 
he's blamed if he'll go on standin' it, 
neither.' 

' Oh !' hissed Adam, ' he's sick of it, is 
he "?' and, in the effort he made to subdue 
his voice, the veins in his face rose up to 
be purple cords. ' He'd nothing to do 
with bringing it on us all ? it's no fault of 
his that the place is turned into a hell. 



ADAM A XD E VE. 1 4 5 



and Ave hunted down like a pack o' 
dogs ?' 

* Awh, well, I daun't knaw^ nuffin 'bout 
that/ said old Zebedee, huffily ; ' how^ so 
be if 'tis so, when he's got clane off 'twill 
be all rioht a^en.' 

' All right !' thundered Adam, ' how all 
right ? "Right that he should get off, and 
Ave be left here ; that he shouldn't swing, 

but Ave must staA' to suffer '?' 

«/ 

' AAA^h, come, come, come !' said the old 
man, AA'ith the testy impatience of one 
ready to argue but incapable of reasoning, 
* 'tain t no talk o' swingin', now; that was a 
bit o' brag on the boy's part ; he's so eager 
to saA^e his neck as you or me either. 
Awnly Jonathan s bin here and taAvld up 
sommat that makes un Avant to be off to 
Avance, for he says, AA'hat us all knaws, 
Avithout he's minded to it, you can't slip a 
knot round Jonathan's clapper ; and 'tain't 

VOL. III. 50 



146 ADAM AND EVE, 

that Jerreni's afeared o' his tongue, awnly 
for the keepin' up o' pace and quietness he 
fancies 'twould be better for un to make 
hisself .scarce for a bit.' 

Adam's whole body quivered as a spasm 
of rage ran through him ; and Zebedee, 
noting the trembling movement of his 
hands, conveyed his impression of the 
cause by bestowing a glance, accompanied 
with a pantomimic bend of his elbow in 
the direction of a certain stone bottle 
which stood in the corner. 

* Did Jonathan tell you what word 'twas 
he'd brought X Adam managed to say. 

' Noa. I never cast eyes on un. He 
warn't here 'bove a foo minits 'fore he 
slipped away, none of 'em knaws where or 
how. He was warned not to go anighst 
you,' he added after a moment's pause ; * so 
I reckon you knaws no more of un than us 
does/ 



ADAM AND E VE. 1 47 

' And Eve and Joan — were they let into 
the secret 1' asked Adam, and the sound of 
his harsh voice grated even on Zebedee's 
dulled ears. 

' Iss, I reckon,' he said, half turning ; 
* 'cos Eve's got to do the trick — her's to 
bamfoozle the sodger. Odds rot it, lad !^ 
he cried, startled at the expression which 
leaped into Adam's haggard face, ' what's 
-come to 'ee that you must turn round 'pon 
us like that % Is it the maid you's got 
a spite agen ? Lors ! but 'tis a poor 
stomach you's got to'rds her, if you'm 
angered by such a bit o' philanderin' as 
I've towld 'ee of What d'ee mane then 1' 
he added, his temper rising at such unwar- 
rantable inconsistency. ^ I've knawed as 
honest women as ever her is that's a done 
that, and more too, for to get their men 
safe off and out o' way — iss, and wasn't 
thought none the wus of, neither. You'm 

50—2 



148 ADAM AND EVE. 

growed mighty fancikul all to wance 'bout 
what us is to do, and what us dussn't think 
o'. I'm sick o' such talk. 'Taint nawthin' 
else fra' mornin' to night, but Adam this 
and Adam that. I'm darned if 'tis to be 
wondered at if the maid plays ee false ; by 
gosh ! I'd do the trick, if I was she, 'fore 
I'd put up with such fantads from you, or 
either man like 'ee — so there !' 

Koger did not answer, and old Zebedee, 
interpreting the silence into an admission 
of the force of his arguments, forbore to 
press the advantage, and generously started 
a fresh topic. 

' They's a towld 'ee, I reckon, 'bout the 
bill they's a posted up, right afore the 
winder, by the Three Pilchards,' he said. 
' Iss,' he added, not waiting for an answer ; 
^ the king's pardon, and wan hunderd 
pound, to he who'll discover to 'em the 
man who 'twas fired the fatal shot. ' Wan 



ADAM AND E VE. 149 

hunderd pound !* he sneered. ' That's a fat 
lot, surely, and as for t' king's pardon, why 
'twudn't lave un braithin' time to spend it 
in, not if he war left here 'twudn't. No 
fear ! us ain't so bad off yet that either 
wan in Polperro 'ud stink their fingers wi' 
blid money. Lord save un ! sich a man 
'ud fetch up the devil hisself to see un 
pitched head foremost down to bottom o' 
say, which 'ud be the end I'd vote for un, 
and see it was card out too — iss, tho' his 
bones bore my own flesh and blid 'pon 'em, 
I wud !' and in his answer the old man's 
ruo'oed face o-rew distorted with emotion. 

But Adam neither spoke nor made com- 
ment on his words. His eyes were fixed 
on mid-air, his nostrils worked, his mouth 
quivered. Within him a legion of devils 
seemed to have broken loose, and, sensible 
of the mastery they were gaining over him, 
he leaped up, and with the wild despair of 



1 50 ADAM AND E VE. 

one who catches at a straw to save him 
from destruction, it came upon him to rush 
down and look once more into the face of 
her who he had found so fair and proved 
so false. 

' What is it you m goin' to do then T 
said Zebedee, seeing that Adam had 
stooped down and was raising the panel,, 
by which exit was effected. 

^ Goin' to see if the coast's clear/ said 
Adam. 

^ Better bide where you be/ urged 
Zebedee. ' Joan or they's sure to rin up 
so soon as 'tis all safe.' 

But Adam paid no heed ; muttering 
something about knowing what he was 
about, he slipped up the partition and crept 
under, cautiously ascertained that the outer 
room was empty, and then, crossing the 
passage, stole down the stairs. 

The door which led into the room was. 



ADAM AND EVE. 151 

shut ; but through a convenient chink 
Adam could take a survey of those within. 
Already his better self had begun to 
struggle in his ear, already the whisper 
which desire was prompting asked what if 
Eve stood there — alone and — But no, his 
glance had taken in the whole, quick as the 
liorhtninof's flash the details of that scene 
were given to Roger's gaze. Eve bent 
forward, standing beside the door, over 
whose hatch a stranofer s face was thrust, 
while Joan, close to the spot where Jerrem 
still lay hid, clasped her two hands as if 
to stay the breath which longed to cry, 
' He's free.' . . . The blow dealt, the fire- 
brand flung, each evil passion quickened 
into life, filled with jealousy and mad re 
venge, Adam turned swiftly round, and 
backward sped his way. 

' They'm marched ofl*, ain't 'em V said 
old Zebedee, as, Adam having given the 



1 52 ADAM AND E VE. 



signal, he drew the panel of the door aside. 
^ I've a bin listenin' to their trampin' past 
— why what's the time, lad, eh ? — must be 
close on break o' day, ain't it *?' 

' Just about,' said Adam, pushing back 
the shutter so that he might look out and 
see that no one stood near enough to over- 
look his descent. 

' Why, you hain't goin agen, be 'ee ?' 
said Zebedee, in amazement. * Why, what 
for be 'ee hikin' off like this then — eh, lad ? 
Lord save us, he's gone !' he exclaimed as 
Adam, swinging himself by a dexterous 
twist on to the first ledge, let the shutter 
close behind him. ' Wa-al, I'm blamed if 
this ain't a rum start ! Sommut gone 
wrono: with un now. I'll wao-er he's a bin 
tiched up in the bunt soraehows for a 
guinea ; and if so be 'tis with wan o' they ; 
they'm all sixes and sebens down below ; 
so I'll lave 'em bide a bit, and hab a tot o' 



ADAM AND E VE. 153 

liquor and lie down for a spell. Lord send 
'em to knaw the valley o' pace and quiet- 
ness I But 'tis wan and all the same, 

' '' Friends and faws, 

To battle they gaws, 
And what they all fights about, 
Nawbody knaws. " ' 

It was broad daylight when Joan, 
having once before failed to make her uncle 
hear, gave such a vigorous rap that, start- 
ing up, the old man cried, 'Ay, ay, mate,' 
and with all speed unfastened the door. 

Joan crept in, and some conversation 
-ensued, in the midst of which, as the 
recollection of the events just past recurred 
to his mind, Zebedee asked : 

^ What was up wdth Adam V 

' With Adam 1' echoed Joan. 

' Iss ; what made un start off like he 
■did ?' 

Joan looked for a minute, then she lifted 
the stone bottle and shook its contents. 



154 ADAM AND EVE. 

' Why, whatever be 'ee telhn' up ?' she 
said. 

^ Tehm up ! why, you seed un down 
below, didn't 'ee ? — iss, you did, now.' 

Completely puzzled what to think, Joan 
shook her head. 

' Lor' ha' massy ! don't never tell me 
he didn't shaw hisself. Why, the sodgers 
was barely out o' doors 'fore he comes 
tumblin' in to shutter there, and after a bit 
he says, '' I'll just step down below," he says, 
and out he goes ; and in a quarter less no 
time back he comes tappin' agen, and 
when I drawed open for un by he pushes, 
and 'fore I could say knife he was out and 
clane off.' 

' You haven't a bin dreamin' of it, have 
'ee V said Joan, her face growing pale with 
apprehension. 

' Naw, 'tis Gospel truth, every ward. 
I've a had a toothful of liquor since, 



ADAM AND EVE. 155 

and a bit o' a caulk, but not a drap 

more. ' 

'Jerrem's comin up into t'other room,'' 

said Joan, not wishing to betray all the 

alarm she felt ; ' will 'ee go into un there 

the whiles I rins down and says a word to 

Ever 

' Iss,' said the old man ; ' and I'll freshen 

mysen up a bit with a dash o' cold watter ; 

happen I may bring some more o' it to my 

mind then.' 

But, his ablutions over and the whole 

family assembled, Zebedee could throw no 
more light on the subject, the recital of 
which caused so much anxiety that Joan, 
yielding to Eve's entreaties, decided to set 
off with all speed for Crumplehorn. 

' Mother, Adam's all right— ain't he here 
still, and safe ?' cried Joan, bursting into 
the kitchen where Mrs. Tucker, only just 
risen, was occupied with her house duties. 



15G ADAM AND EVE. 

' Iss, plaise the Lord, and so far as I 
knaws of, he is,' repHed Mrs. Tucker, 
greatly startled by Joan's unexpected ap- 
pearance. ^ Why, what do 'ee mane, 
child, eh ? But there,' she added, starting 
up, ' us 'ull make sure to wance and knaw 
whether 'tis lies or truth we'm tellin'. 
Here, Samm}^^, off over so quick as legs 
can carry 'ee, and climber up and fetch 
Adam back with 'ee.' 

Sammy started off, and Joan proceeded 
to communicate the cause of her uneasi- 
ness. 

' Awh, my dear I is that all V exclaimed 
Mrs. Tucker, at once pronouncing sentence 
on poor old Zebedee's known faihng; 'then 
my mind's made easy agen. There's too 
much elbow crookin' 'bout that story for 
me to set any hold by it.' 

' Do 'ee think so V said Joan, ready to 
€atch at any straw of hope. 



ADAM AND EVE. 15^ 



*Why, iss ; and for this reason too, 
I ' 

But at this moment Sammy appeared, 
and, without waiting for him to speak, the 
two women uttered a cry as they saw in 
his face a confirmation of their fears. 

' Iss, 'tis every ward true ; he's a gone 
shure 'nuf !' exclaimed Sammy ; 'but by his 
own accord, I reckon, 'cos there ain't no 
signs o' nothin' bein' open 'ceptin 'tis the 
hatch over by t'mill-wheel.' 

'Awh, mother!' cried Joan, * whatever's 
the manin' of it ? My poor heart's a 
sinkin' down lower than iver. O Lord \ 
if they should ha' cotched un, any- 
ways.' 

' Now, doan't 'ee take on like that, 
Joan,' said Mrs. Tucker. ' 'Tis like 
temptin' o' Providence to do such hke. 
I'll be bound for't he's safe home alongs't 
afore now ; he ain't like wan to act wild,. 



158 ADAM AND E VE, 

and go steppin' into danger wi' both his eyes 
wide open/ 

The possibility suggested, and Joan was 
■oif again, back on her way to Polperro, too 
impatient to wait while her mother put on 
her bonnet to accompany her. 

At the door stood Eve, breathless ex- 
pectation betraying itself in her every look 
and gesture. Joan shook her head, while 
Eve's finger, quick laid upon her lip, warned 
her to be cautious. 

'They're back,' she muttered, as Joan 
'Came up close ; ' they've just marched past, 
and gone down to the quay.' 
' What for ?' cried Joan. 
' I don't know ; run and see, Joan ; 
everybody's flocking that way.' 

Joan ran down the street, and took her 
place among a mob of people watching 
with eager interest the movements of a 
soldier who, with much unnecessary parade 



ADAM AND EVE. 159 

and delay, was taking down the bill of 
reward posted outside the Three Pilchards. 
A visible anticipation of the effect about 
to be produced stirred the small red-coated 
company, and they wheeled round so as to 
take note of any sudden emotion produced 
by the surprise they felt sure awaited the 
assembly. 

' Whatever is it, eh V asked Joan, trying 
to catch a better siofht of what was sfoinof 
on. 

'They'm stickin' up a noo reward, 
't seems,' said an old man, close by. 
^ 'Taint no ' 

But the swaying back of the crowd 
carried Joan with it. A surge forward, 
and then on her ear fell a shrill cry, and 
as the name of Jerrem Christmas started 
from each mouth, a hundred eyes seemed 
turned upon her. For a moment the girl 
stood dazed^ staring around like some wild 



160 ADAM AND EVE. 

animal at bay ; then, flinging out her arms, 
she forced those near her aside, and rushing 
forward to the front, made a desperate 
clutch at the soldier. 

' Speak — tell me — what's writ there ?' 
she cried. 

' Writ there X said the man, startled by 
the scared face that was turned up to him. 
* Why, the warrant to seize for murder 
Jerrem Christmas, living or dead, on the 
king's evidence of Adam Pascal ! . . .' 

And the air was rent by a cry of un- 
utterable woe, caught up by each voice 
around, and coming back in echoes from 
far and near long after Joan lay a senseless 
heap on the stones upon Avhich she had 
fallen. 




CHAPTER VIII. 




HILE the small party of soldiers 
were employed in attracting the 
attention of the inhabitants to 
the meaningless parade of taking down the 
offer of reward, and replacing it by the 
announcement of discovery, the laro^er 
portion of their company had aheady 
entered Uncle Zebedee's house and seized 
upon Jerrem, their object being to avoid 
any defence on the part of the neighbours, 
which Adam, with a view of preventing 

VOL. III. 51 



1 G2 ADAM AND E VE. 



further search being made in the house, 
had assured them was certain to take place 
unless they could find a means of very 
speedily effecting their purpose. Although 
little disposed to be influenced by any of 
his suggestions, the force of this one 
was greatly strengthened by the necessity 
of dividing themselves into two parties, one 
of which must take Adam on, while the 
other returned to Polperro to seize the 
prisoner. And this they managed with 
such promptitude, that in less than ten 
minutes they had entered the house, 
and had dragged out Jerrem, who, half- 
stupefied, Avas pinioned and marched off 
before he was sufficiently aroused to 
thoroughly comprehend or realise his situa- 
tion. 

The tattoo of the drums announced to 
the men on the quay that the capture was 
effected, and the party, hurrying off by the 



ADAM AND EVE. 1 G3 

Warren, had joined their comrades, already 
half up Talland Lane, before those who had 
been spectators of one calamity could ex- 
change their evil tidings with those who had 
witnessed the other. 

Yes, Jerrem was gone ! led off to dis- 
grace, maybe to death, through the 
treacher}^ of his shipmate, his comrade, his 
— all but in blood — brother. What would 
come next ? Ghastly fears crowded in 
upon all present. Vengeance grew rank, 
hatred spread out on all sides ; the earth 
thirsted for his blood, and the air was thick 
with curses showered on his name. Even 
Joan turned relentless, and flung pity 
from her heart ; while old Zebedee, stung 
to the quick by the odium brought upon 
his name, disowned Adam for his son, and 
took God to witness that so long as life 
remained every farthing he possessed 
should be spent in saving Jerrem. 

51—2 



164 ADAM AND EVE. 



At early dawn of the next day, Joan, at 
the instance of her uncle and in company 
with several trusty friends, set off first for 
Liskeard, and then, if need be, to get on 
to Plymouth or to Bodmin — at one of 
which places Jerrem, they said, was certain 
to be tried. Bodmin gaol and Plymouth 
clink had both been familiar in days gone 
by to many who still lived to tell their 
tales and give their experience, and schemes 
were already abroad to put the larger 
boats on wheels, so that, if Bodmin were 
selected, conveyances might be supplied by 
which the mass of the people could be 
transported there, and see fair play dealt 
out to their comrade. 

But days went by without Joan coming 
back, and Eve, who was left behind to look 
after Uncle Zebedee, had to sit and listen 
to the terrible outpourings of wrath against 
his son, to which the old man gave vent in 



ADAM AND EVE. 165 

the presence of his neighbours, and the 
more heartrending desolation of spirit 
which bowed him to the o^round when no 
strange eye was near to witness his weight 
of woe. 

So entirely had the chain of circum- 
stances overpowered Eve that this climax 
of disaster seemed to have sealed up the 
flow of her emotions, and listening to and 
looking at the tears, exclamations, sighs, 
and groans, with which the excitable, 
sympathetic Cornish folk expressed their 
anguish and their indignation, she asked 
herself, ' Had all feeling left her ? Did she 
no longer care what happened to herself or 
anybody around her ? Was it nothing to 
her that her life was, as it were, at an end ; 
her future blighted ; her hopes dead ; her 
love disgraced, reviled, disowned, and de- 
nounced by his own father and his own 
family V Anyway, she could find no tears 



166 ADAM AND EVE. 

to bewail her sad fate in, no sighs to re- 
lieve her burdened heart, no groans to ease 
her desolate spirit : all was chaos, over 
which two dark shadows moved — the 
spectral forms of herself and Adam. 

^ Uncle, what do you think's become of 
him ? where can he have gone to 1' Eve 
asked one night, as, no longer afraid of 
his neighbours seeing him, the old man 
tore off the armour under which in their 
presence he concealed every softer feeling. 

' To bottom o' sae — clane gone out o* 
the warld, I hope, where I wishes I was 
too !' groaned Zebedee. ' Awh I to think 
e'er a boy o' mine should ha' sarved us so ! 
that he, us counted 'bove all other flesh and 
blood, should ha' bin the whiles carryin' 
'bout the heart of a fausse Judas in his 
body !' 

* Perhaps he was mad,' said Eve, drop- 
ping her voice in terror of the suggestion. 



ADAM AND EVE. 16 T 

' Lord send I could see un ravin' !' cried 
Zebedee. 'Why/ he added, his voice 
breaking under the pictured joy, ' I'd 
thraw mysel' 'pon un and hug un to me 
close, though he tored out my heart 'pon 
the spot for't % Naw, lass, naw/ he sighed, 
' he ain't mad : 'tis the devil has seazed 
hold on un somehow ! that's what's brought 
un to this.' 

' Didn't he say nothing that seems now 
as if he'd told you that night what he 
meant to do ?' urged Eve. 

' Naw, nothin'.' 

' And you didn't say anything to him, 
did you ?* 

' Iss, there 'tis, that's what sticks by 
me, and shaws me plain the vengeance 
that was in 'un, 'cos I tawld un that us 
was tryin' to dale double, so as to manage 
for Jerrem to stale away.' 

' You didn't tell him about the soldier ?' 



168 ADAM AND EVE. 

faltered Eve. ' No, you couldn't, because 
you didn't know anything about it your- 
self, did you ?' 

' Iss, I did. Jerrem tawld — he allays 
tawld me everythin', Jerrem did — ^and I 
ups and tells Adam.' . 

An icy grip seized Eve by the heart. 

' Oh, uncle I' she groaned, * could it be be- 
cause of that — that he thought — about me V 

' What damon's in the maid now '?' cried 
the old man, starting to his feet, and stand- 
ing before her with clenched hands and 
quivering limbs. ' Do 'ee give heed to 
what 'tis you'm sayin' of Doan t 'ee knaw 
that if I thought that 'twas you was the 
cause of it, I'd scat out yer brains on the 
planchin where you'm standing to !' 

Eve shrank back in terror, while Zebedee, 
after a minute's pause, his outburst ended, 
sank down into his former despondent 
attitude, muttering : 



ADAM AND EVE. 16^ 

' There, there ! let be ! let be ! Awh, I 
wander what 'tis a-keepin' o' Joan so ! — • 
things is all bottom side upmost when her'& 
out o' hailin' distance/ 

But two days more passed before Joan 
returned, bringing with her the startling 
intelliofence that, instead of Bodmin or 
Plymouth, Jerrem was to be tried in Lon- 
don, to which place report said Adam had 
already been removed. But though every 
one thirsted for news, beyond the bare 
facts, Joan had little with which to satisfy 
them ; she had failed in her endeavour to 
see Jerrem, of whose present whereabouts 
even no one could speak with certainty ; 
she could learn no positive tidings of Adam, 
neither had she been able to ascertain any 
trustworthy account of the betrayal, only 
that it was in every one's mouth that Adam 
had done it, and had meant to do it from 



170 A£>AM AND EVE. 

the first moment he found that the shot 
fired against his will would bring them all 
to trouble. Mr. Macey, the lawyer at 
Fowey, who had always managed Uncle 
Zebedee's money business, had said 'twas a 
terrible job of it, and though he couldn't 
take it himself, he'd see 'twas carried 
through by somebody sharper at such work 
than he was ; and he'd sent uncle Zebedee 
word that not a stone should be left un- 
turned, nor a guinea unspent, while hope 
was left that Jerrem's life might be saved ; 
but he also sent a solemn warning to him, 
and to all the Lottery s crew, to keep quiet 
and out of sight, until 'twas seen whether 
they meant to carry their vengeance further, 
or whether Jerrem's life alone would serve 
to content them. 

'Wa-al,' sighed Zebedee, who had 
listened eagerly to the whole of Joan's 
details, and patiently to old Mr. Macey's 



ADAM AND EVE. 171 

friendly warning, 'they'm fair words and 
kindly spoken ; and so far as they goes I'll 
bide by 'em. But hark 'ee here, Joan, if 
the warsfc comes to warst, mind this, 
though they strings me up with un and 
we swings together, I'll stand yet wance 
more face to face with Jerrem afore he 
•dies.' 

^ And that you shall,' said Joan ; ' and 
so will I, too, for while in life us cherished 
cm, so while life lasts us '11 never desert 
un.' 

' And as for t'other wan,' said the 
stricken old man, his wrinkled face grow- 
ing pinched and sharp, ^ may the wound 
that he's planted in my heart rankle and 
fester in his own ! May he live to know 
the want o' they he's cast hisself off from, 
a,nd die a stranger in a furrin land, and be 
buried where none who knawed un here 
<jan point to the grave that holds un I' 



172 ADAM AND EVE. 

' Uncle !' cried Eve, thrusting her fingers- 
into her ears to keep out these terrible 
words from falling on them, ^ uncle !' but 
Joan's upraised hand warned her to keep 
silent, and turning she saw that a sudden 
change had fallen upon Zebedee ; his 
features had relaxed, his stretched eyelids 
were half closed over his glazed eyes, his 
head drooped low and was sunk down upon 
his breast. 

For some minutes the two wis stood 
anxiously gazing at him, until Joan, terri- 
fied by the ashen pallor which had blanched 
his usually ruddy cheeks, ventured to speak, 
and at length succeeded in so far rousing 
him that he allowed himself to be per- 
suaded to go to bed, and the two girls 
were left alone. 

' You're wanting to run up to your 
mother's, Joan, ain't you?' said Eve. 'I'll sit 
and watch Uncle Zebedee while you're gone.' 



ADAM AND EVE. 173 

' No, never mind for to-night/ said 
Joan, wearily. 

^ Then let me go/ said Eve ; ' 'twon't 
take me any time, and I want a breath of 
fresh air,' and she rose from her seat as 
she spoke ; but Joan intercepted. 

' No ; now sit down,' she said hurriedly ; 
' there ain't no call for neither to go ; 'sides 
which 'tis too late. I don't want 'ee to 
go wanderin' 'bout in the dark — you'm too 
much given to goin out by yourself — it 
won't do now; 'tain't safe, you knaw/ 

Eve stared. 

* Not safe, Joan ! why not V 

* Well, now, I'd rather you didn't. Sit 
down now, like a dear.' 

Eve sat down, but her curiosity awakened 
by Joan's agitated, nervous manner, she 
said : 

' Joan, what is it ? I'm sure you've 
iieard somethinsr. Tell me, what makes 



174 ADAM AND EVE, 

you say we oughtn't to go out by ourselves^ 
ehr 

Joan hesitated. 

* I wonder/ she said, ^ whether I'd best 
tell 'ee or not ? It may be nothin' but 
a passel o' mazed talk, only I wouldn't have 
a finger o' harm laid 'pon 'ee for warlds.' 

' Why, what is it, Joan ?' 

* Well, my dear, you see, I've see'd 
Jonathan. Through Adain's tellin', he was 
tooked off too, and lodged in Plymouth 
clink ; but findin' they couldn't make un 
spake a word o' sense, when they carr'd 
Adam away they left Jonalhan bide, and 
there he is, and there I hopes he'll stay.' 

^You do? What for?' asked Eve, 
amazed. 

' Why, 'cos o' you, Eve. Iss,' she said, 
answering her look of surprise, ^he's for all 
the world like anybody ravin' mad agen 
you.' 



ADAM AND EVE, 175 

' Against me ? But why against me ?' 

* He will have that you'm the cause of it 
all,' said Joan ; ' and 't seems now he let 
out to Adam 'bout the letter that Jerreni 
writ and he broffed, and then he drove un 
further mad by a passel o' lies he's some- 
how got tagged on t' it, that you'd ha' told 
the sergeant, and through that he dropped 
a bit o' paper, telhn' of it all, into the 
rendevoos winder — for seemin' that was 
how they got scent o' the Lottery 8 landin'.' 

' And Adam believed him ?' gasped Eve. 

' He must have,' sobbed Joan ; ' and then 
I reckon somethin' he see'd or heered that 
night finished un.' 

' Oh, Joan !' cried Eve, flinging herself 
down and burying her head on Joan's lap. 

* Iss ; don't it seem as if us all must have 
some hand in tightenin' the rope that's 
round that poor sawl's neck ?' 

' And Adam could believe that I would 



176 ADAM AND EVE. 

iDetray them — would betray him?' and clasp- 
ing her hands, Eve looked up as if making 
an appeal to some unseen presence. ^ Him/ 
she said, ' for whom I would have given my 
life — for whom,' she cried, breaking down, 
^ oh ! Joan, I would give my life now !' 

^ Iss, I know you would,' said Joan, 
hugging her close to her. ^ Why, haven't 
I called un everything bad before ee, o' 
purpose 'cos I should see 'ee flare up agen 
me for doin' it, and haven't I blessed 'ee in 
my heart for stickin' to un through thick 
and thin ? Awh, Eve, my dear, don't 'ee 
judge me hard for keeping all to Jerrem's 
side. 'Taint only love for Jerrem makes 
me do it, but that Adam shan't never be 
fouled by havin' the stain o' blood restin' 'pon 
un. If 'twas only for that, I'd spend my last 
breatli to save Jerrem from hangin'.' 

' They think they'll try to hang him ?' 
said Eve, in a faltering voice. 



ADAM AND EVE. 177 

* Iss, for certain they'll try, and though I 
didn't say so to uncle, all Mr. Macey 
fears is, that wan life won't content 'em 
neither.' 

* Could Adam have known that 1' whis- 
pered Eve. 

^ He knawed 'twas death to whoever 
was took, and a free pardon to whoever 
told on 'em, or else why didn't he take and 
knock him on the head hisself ? Jonathan 
says,' she added, after a minute's pause, ^that 
when he'd told un 'bout you, he sprung on 
un like a tiger, and shook un like a rat ; 
and after, when it comed to 'bout the 
letter, he roared out like a bull belvin', 
and then fell flat down 'pon his face like 
one struck for death.' 

' Oh, why — why did Jerrem send that 
letter !' moaned Eve, wring^ino-her hands in 
desperation. 

* Iss, why indeed ? said Joan ; ' though 
VOL. III. 52 



178 ADAM AND EVE, 

that could have had no thin' to do with the 
findin's out that I can see ; for if 'twas the 
last word I spoked, I could take an oath to 
never havin' quitted a word 'bout it to a 
single livin' sawl ; and as to you meetin' 
the sergeant, why, you never stirred from 
this, did 'ee ? Let's see, what did us do 
that day V she added, trying to recall the 
past events, while Eve, sensible of having 
concealed her meeting with Reuben May, 
averted her face, so that Joan might not 
perceive its terrible pallor. 

Over and over again had Eve en- 
deavoured to screw up her courage to tell 
Joan of this meeting, since which one mis- 
fortune after another had crowded so 
thickly upon them, as to make each en- 
deavour seem inopportune. For days after 
the interview, she had every now and again 
been seized with terror lest Reuben should 
make his appearance ; and great was her 



ADAM AND E VE. 170 

relief when, as time went on, she began to 
be released from this anxiety. But no 
suspicion that he could in any way have 
been connected with the betrayal had ever 
entered her mind until now, when, as Joan 
spoke of her being the supposed betrayer, 
a sudden dart of terror seemed to strike her. 
Was it possible ? Could she have said any- 
thing that Reuben had laid hold of against 
them ? For an instant Eve wrestled with 
the doubt, and tried to crush it ; but so 
vividly did it rise up before her, that at 
any cost she felt it must be set at 
rest, and seizing Joan's hand, she blurted 
out : 

' Joan, there's one thing I've never told 
you of — that the day we expected them all 
back, after Jerrem's letter had come, T went 
out for a bit by Talland way, and there, 
just down before you come to the Warren 

stile, I met ' 

52—2 



1 80 ADAM AND E VE. 

' Not he ! No, doan't'ee tell me you see'd 
the sergeant,' cried Joan, forcmg her 
hands up to Eve's mouth, as if to keep back 
the words. 

' The sergeant, no T said Eve indignantly, 
' but the young man I told you of from 
London — Reuben May !' 

' Reuben May, Eve ! Why however did 
he come down 'long this ways ? What 
broffed un here, eh ?' 

' He was coming to see me,' said Eve. 
' He had come in Capen Triggs' vessel, be- 
cause of something he'd heard about us, 
and the minute he saw me he began 
about uncle and Adam, calling them 
both thieves and robbers, and I can't tell 
what.' 

* But that wouldn't make 'ee tell un 
nothin' 'bout their landin' ?' said Joan. 

' No. I feel sure I never mentioned 
that. I told him they were expected home. 



ADAM AND EVE. 181 

because I feared he'd want to come that 
night and see you all ; but then we fell to 
•quarrelling again, and parted in such anger 
that I said I hoped never to see his face 
again.' 

' But whatever made 'ee keep it to your- 
self, and never spake of it 'til now V said 
Joan, turning her eyes upon Eve with a 
look of anxious scrutiny. 

' I never meant to keep it from you, 
Joan,' said Eve earnestly,' and only that 
your mother and Mrs. Climo and the rest 
were here, I should have told you the 
minute I got back ; then, when they were 
gone, I said, I'll tell her as soon as we come 
down from the cliff: but what happened 
there put everything else out of my head 
for that night, and since then, though I've 
had it on my lips to say twenty times, 
something has always come up to hinder 
me from speaking.' 



182 ADAM AND EVE. 

' I'd a made sure you'd never cast eyes 
on any man outside the place/ said Joan, 
perplexed by this new opening out of diffi- 
culties. 

^ I wish now, more than ever, that it had 
never happened,' sighed Eve. ' Still, Joan, 
the more I think of it the more certain I 
feel that Keuben May had no hand in it, 
unless it could be that anybody might have 
watched us together. That's not impossible, 
although I never met a single soul, coming 
or going.' ^ 

Joan made no comment ; for a minute 
she seemed to struggle and debate with 
her thoughts, then, suddenly looking up,^ 
she said : 

* Eve, you'll have to go back home to 
wance ; it 'ull never do to have 'ee stayin' 
here now.' 

* But why, Joan ? Has what I have 
told you made you think ill of me ? Don't 



ADAM AND EVE. 183 

you believe that I am speaking the truth 
when I say that what kept me silent were 
the bitter words that Reuben May spoke. 
I meant to tell you of it because I had 
spoken of him to you before, but I could 
never have told Adam, that one I had 
counted as my greatest friend had called 
him a thief over whose head the gallows 
was danoiinof :' and at the remembrance 
of how near those words seemed now 
to the truth, Eve burst into a passion of 
tears. 

' Now don't 'ee go for to cry like that,' 
exclaimed Joan, dashing away the drops 
which were blinding her own eyes. 'What- 
ever 'tis, I loves 'ee too well to think harm 
of 'ee for it ; and whether 'twas he or some 
other man, t' mischief's done now and can't 
be set straight agen. But, Eve, us mustn't 
let more harm come to us if we can hinder 
it, and I towld 'ee that I didn't like the 



1 84 ADAM AND E VE. 

angry words and the manin' looks o' Jona- 
than, and he gived two or three twists o' 
hisself while he was spakin' that made me 
tmni as cold as death, and 't seemed as if I 
couldn't draw my eyes away from the 
glarin' roll he was lookin' about un with.' 

' Oh, I'm not afraid of Jonathan,' said 
Eve, trying to brave down the tremor of 
nervous fear which was creeping through 
her ; ^ a poor, half-witted creature who 
says one thing this minute, and forgets all 
about it the next.' 

^ Awh, my dear, don't 'ee sneer at Jona- 
than,' said Joan reprovingly ; ' he's a bitter 
foe, I'll warn 'ee. And when,' she added, 
dropping her voice to a whisper, ' he talks 
of maidens who loves to stand gazin' 'pon 
the sea, growin' dizzy and fallin' in, and o' 
folks bein 'ticed fro' their homes, and never 
comin' back 'long^s asfen, 'tis time to steer 
clear of un, Eve, for there's devilry in 



ADAM AND E VE. 185 

Ms words, and mischief broodin' in his 
mind.' 

* Why, Joan !' gasped Eve ; * surely he 
wouldn't % You don't think he'd — murder 
me ?' and, as the words came trembling 
out, her very lips turned white with 
horror. 

' I wouldn't like to lave 'ee in his way,' 
faltered Joan. 

' But he'd be afraid — wouldn't he X 

' Wa-al, if so be he could get free to tell 
his story there's no knawin' what might 
come of it. I had to dale double with un 
as it was, and manage so that neither wan 
but me got in to see un ; and 'fore he gets 
set free altogether. Eve, you must put 
miles atween you and they, who, when 
they'd hstened to his story, would awnly 
be too quick to shut their eyes to what 
they wasn't axed to take part in.' 

^ Of course, in that case,' said Eve, ' 'tis 



186 ADAM AND EVE. 

best I should go back by myself again to 
London.' 

And, as the words came slowly dragging 
forth, the narrow street, the obscured sky, 
the stifling air, weighed down upon her, 
and crushed her with a sense of gloom 
unknown before, when her thirst for free- 
dom was bat a want unsatisfied. Her whole 
being revolted against the cruel exchange ; 
her nature cried out in protest, but in vain. 

The more they discussed the point, the 
more convinced they both became that 
there was no other possible alternative, 
and, the money for her journey being 
supplied by Uncle Zebedee, under pretence 
of accompanying Jochabed Giles in one of 
her stolen visits to Plymouth, Eve set off 
late one afternoon, intending to rest by the 
way, and get on the next day to Plymouth, 
whence she would take coach to London. 

There was to be no leave-taking, for 



ADAM AND E VE. 1 87 

no one must know that she was going 
away. So, with only a nod of good-bye 
to Uncle Zebedee, and a moment's despe- 
rate clinging to Joan, Eve left the house, 
and, in silent sadness, followed Jochabed 
down the street, past the Warren, and 
away along by the cliff path until they 
came to the jutting point which, once past, 
shuts out all view of Polperro from be- 
yond. 

Here Eve paused, and, motioning Jocha- 
bed to o'o on, she turned and bade her 
eyes gaze round upon the scene, and look 
their last farewell. 

The sun, which all day long had shone 
hot and fierce, had run its course, and 
sunk to rest, leaving its trail of glory to 
tip the hills above, and be reflected down 
in crimson glow upon the sea below. The 
mist of heat, which all day long had hung 
over the land, though rolled away from 



1 88 ADAM AND E VE, 

there, still floated in filmy clouds before 
the harbour's mouth, veiling the little 
haven, and casting broad shadows on the 
rugged cliffs, up whose steep sides the 
white - faced houses clung, higher and 
higher still, till they were lost amid the 
tangle of the ridge which crowns the 
valley's sides. 

Like an echo awakened by some tuneful 
strain which jars on the ear and smites 
the heart, because the voice which gave it 
melody is still and hushed for ever, so the 
sunset calm of that peaceful scene jarred 
on the misery of her who stood stricken 
and desolate. 

Involuntarily she shut her eyes that 
through them at least her heart should be 
no longer pierced ; and when she opened 
them again, a mist of gathering tears 
obscured her view and blotted out the 
prospect from her sight. 



ADAM AND E VE. 1 89 

Then, slowly turning. Eve went her way, 
knowing that while this life should last, the 
face of that fair earth would never meet 
her eyes again. 




CHAPTER IX. 




EUBEN MAY had been but a 
short time back in London, 
when, one evening as he was 
closing the shutters of his small shop, 
a boy presented himself saying he was the 
landlady's nephew at Knight's Passage, 
and had been sent by her to ask Mr. May 
for some of the things he was taking care 
of for Eve Pascal. 

' Why, what does she want them for V 
asked Peuben, curtly. 

' She wants them for Eve Pascal her- 



ADAM AND EVE. 191 

self/ said the boy. ' Eve Pascal has 
come back again ; she came back this 
morning, only she hadn't got any one to 
send till now.' 

^ All right/ said Reuben , returning to 
his shutter-closing, and then proceediDg to 
fasten the door ; ' I'll go round and speak 
to her myself.' 

' Then you won't want me V said the boy, 
not sorry be to released by his stern- 
looking companion. 

* Xo, you can go your own way/ replied 
Reuben, already several paces in advance, 
and walking with such rapid strides that a 
few minutes brought him to the house, 
which had been the scene of all the 
romance his hfe had ever known. 

' Oh, Mr. May !' but, paying no heed to 
the landlady's voice, and without a pause, 
Reuben ran up the different flights of 
stairs, knocked at the door, opened it, and 



192 ADAM AND E VE, 

found himself at once in the presence of 
Eve. 

' Eve !' 

' Eeuben !' 

And then silence, each looking at the 
other, wondering what could have wrought 
such a change ; for the bodily fatigue and 
mental anxiety undergone by Reuben had 
told as heavily on his appearance as the 
sorrow Eve had endured had told on hers, 
although the absence of original comeli- 
ness made the alteration in him less gene- 
rally noticeable. 

' Have you been ill, Eve '?' and as he put 
the question a wild thought sprang up 
that perhaps her suffering had been on his 
account, and, stirred by this prompt- 
ing, Reuben took her hand in his and 
looked with tender anxiety into her 
face. 

' No,' she said, quietly withdrawing her 



ADAM AND EVE. 193 

hand ; ' I have not been ill. Have you ? 
You look very ill.' 

' Oh, that's on account of my having 
walked most of the way back here from 
Plymouth ; it's a stiffish tramp, you know, 
and took the little flesh I had off my 
bones.' 

Eve paused for an instant, as if trying 
to repress the over-haste of her question, 
then she said, while her face was half 
turned away : 

' Did you go straight on to Plymouth 
after I saw you V 

' I got to Plymouth before daylight the 
next morning. I was forced to rest a bit 
here and there on the way, as I'd come the 
same ground once before that day ; but the 
night was fine, so, as I didn't care about 
stopping anywheres, I stumped on without 
waiting to see Triggs even — made a mes- 

voL. III. 53 



194 ADAM AND EVE. 

sage do for him — and started off on my 
journey.' 

* Then you never went near Looe at all T 
Eve exclaimed with eagerness. 

* Ah I' replied Reuben, evading a direct 
reply by a little laugh, under which he 
heralded his answer, ' you may be sure I 
didn't stop to inquire the names of all the 
places I passed through ; I was in too hot 
haste to turn my back on them for any- 
thing of that sort.' 

^ Oh, thank God !' said Eve, and at the 
words her whole mind and body seemed to 
relax from the strain imposed en them 
by the suspicion that, in some indistinct 
way, on her had rested the blame of the 
betrayal. 

' Thank God?' repeated Keuben, sharply. 
' Thank God for what ?' 

' For not making me the betrayer of 
those who put their trust in me.' 

Reuben's face turned crimson ; but so 



ADAM AND E VE. 1 9 5 

engrossed was Eve b}^ her own satisfaction, 
that his sadden confusion was lost upon 
her, and she continued : 

'■ I may as well tell you, Reuben, that a 
terrible trouble has fallen upon me and 
mine since I parted with you. That very 
night some one played us false, and betrayed 
the Lottery into the hands of the revenue.' 

' I can't see what else was to be ex- 
pected,' said Keuben, stolidly; * when men 
run their necks into a noose, they may be 
pretty sure of some day finding the knot 
drawn tight.' 

' I was so afraid that you might have 
laid hold on anything I said to you, and 
had been led in any w^ay to tell it against 
them,' sighed Eve, paying no heed to the 
taunt with which Reuben had hoped to 
sting her. 

' And suj)posing I had/ he said, 
* oughtn't you to thank me for doing it ? 

53—2 



1 96 ADAM AND E VE. 

Don't tell me, Eve/ and he threw into his 
tone a mixture of contempt and bitterness, 
* that you've come to take it as a trial, that 
those you talk of belonging to are forced 
into taking to honest ways.' 

' Those I belong to have been hunted 
down like dogs,' she cried. * A price has 
been set upon their lives, and one of them 
has been dragged away up here that they 
may try and hang him if they can.' 

* What r exclaimed Reuben, starting to 
his feet, ^ hang him ! Who are they going 
to hang ? What can they hang him for % 
Is it your cousin Adam Pascal, you're talk- 
ing of V 

' No ; I wish it was,' said Eve, her face 
quivering with the emotion the relation of 
these details stirred within her ; 'but though 
'twas in fair fight, 'twas Jerrem shot the 
man.' 

' Shot what man ?' gasped Reuben. 



ADAM AND EVE, 19' 



*The revenue man. The Lottery was 
lying still, waiting for the tide to come up, 
when the boats crept up behind them in 
the dark, and, if it hadn't been for Adam, 
not one among their crew would have lived 
to tell the tale ; but by his word he kept 
his own men quiet, all but Jerrem, who 
fired his gun, and down the revenue man 
fell— dead.' 

E-euben stifled the exclamation which 
rose to his lips, and Eve, to whose days of 
pent-up misery the repetition of these woes 
seemed to bring relief, continued : 

^ At first all blamed Adam and praised 
Jerrem, but almost at once the soldiers 
came, and they'd only barely time to hide 
away from them. Adam went to the mill, 
and was there a week and more ; and then 
some one told him that 'twas I was the 
cause of their being betrayed, and drove 
him so mad with jealousy and rage that he 



198 ADAM AND EVE. 

told of the place where Jerrem was hid ; and 
the next day the soldiers came again, 
dragged Jerrem out, and carried him away. 
And now, though uncle spends every guinea 
he has got, 'tis almost sure that through 
Adam's word Jerrem will be hanged ; for 
they say they've brought them both to 
London, and that they're lodged in New- 
gate gaol/ 

Up to this time Reuben's eyes seemed 
riveted upon Eve's face, but as she paused 
he bent his head, and sunk it down upon 
the table near — a movement that at any 
former time would naturally have awakened 
some surprise, but now so familiar had 
Eve grown with the aspect of sorrow, that 
she regarded all visible emotion as an out- 
burst of the certain sympathy to be expected 
from her hearers. 

* Now you know why it is Reuben,' she 
continued, ^ that I feel so glad that you had 



An AM AND EVE. 199 

no hand in anything of this — for you must 
overlook the ano^er that I showed at that 
time. I've been sorry for it often since, 
and feared you'd count me overbold for 
talking as I did. Not that I'm changed, 
Reuben, nor think one bit the less of 
Adam for what's happened. No ! and 
though all the world should turn their 
backs on him, I'd stand by his side ; and to 
prove it I must find him out and tell him 
that, in spite of all they've told him, in 
heart and tongue I've never been untrue to 
him.' And filled with the desire of seeing 
the man she loved, Eve clasped her hands, 
and sat trying to resolve her plans, while 
Reuben commenced pacing the little room 
with a troubled air. Suddenly bringing 
himself to a stand before Eve, he said : 

* Eve, be sure your sin will find you 
out.' 

' No, Reuben ; no,' and she put up her 



200 ADAM AND EVE. 



hand as if to avert the continuance of any 
homily, ' 'tis of no good talking like that. 
Sorrow has sealed up my heart against 
taking condemnation or comfort from any- 
thing of that sort.' 

^ It isn't of you I'm thinking !' he ex- 
claimed. ' Oh !' he cried, giving vent to 
his pent-up feelings, ' down into what a pit- 
fall a minute's evil passion may fling a man. 
To think that I, while I was crying ven- 
geance against others, was drawing down 
the wrath of God upon my own head, 
stamping myself with the brand of Cain, 
and doing the devil's work by sending men 
to death with all their sins still heavy on 
their souls.' 

' Keuben, what is it you mean ?' and 
seizing hold of him with both her hands. 
Eve gazed into his face. 

* That the thought you had was true,' 
he said, * and that 'twas me who dropped 



ADAM AND EVE. 201 

the paper in, that told them where the 
Lottery would be found ;' and a tremor ran 
through Reuben's frame, his pulses for 
a moment quickened, and then grew faint 
and seemed to die away; while Eve uttered 
neither word nor sound, her eyes drooped^ 
her hold relaxed, and tottering she sank 
back into the seat behind her, and there 
sat motionless and still as one carved out 
of stone. 

The abandonment of hope, the un- 
utterable despair of face and form, so unlike 
anything which Keuben had ever seen in 
Eve, touched him as no reproaches could 
have done. That depth of misery which 
words can neither describe nor express 
pierced his inmost soul, and added to the 
stings with which conscience was already 
smiting him. Not for the act of betrayal, 
for, had there been no Eve to prompt 
him, Keuben would have looked upon it 



202 ADAM AND E VE. 

as an act of justice that he should aid the 
law against men, who set order and govern- 
ment at defiance, and though each man on 
board had met his death, Heuben would 
have held his conscience free of any tittle 
of reproach ; but equitable and unyielding 
to himself as well as to others, he full well 
knew that when he wrote the words which 
sealed the Lottery s fate, justice was clean 
gone out of his mind. He neither knew nor 
cared what might become of the men whose 
safety he betrayed ; the whole rancour of 
his hate was turned against his rival, and 
the paper he flung into the Rendezvous 
window was as much a blow aimed at 
Adam as if he had dealt him a thrust, and 
had stabbed him in the dark. 

'Eve,' he said, 'words are but poor 
things at a time like this ; and if I spoke 
from now till ever, I couldn't make you 
see by them the misery I feel, but if you'll 



ADAM AXD E VE. 203 



trust me this far, I ?wear by Hiin ^vho sees 
us both, and knows our hearts, that no stone 
shall be unturned, no thing undone. I'll 
walk London over, and neither rest day 
nor niorht till I find out Adam Pascal and 
his comrade, and tell them the whole truth. 
And when I say this,' he added, his face 
workinc^ with emotion, ' don't fancv 'tis 
because of love of you, Eve. I know that, 
come what may, we never can be nothing 
more than friends now; but oh,' and he held 
out his hands towards her, ^ let's at least be 
that, Eve — let me help you to set yourself 
clear with the man, who, be he what he 
may, it seems you've given all your heart 
to, and you — you heljj me to rid my- 
self of the thought that I've led into sin, 
and hurried on to death, fellow-creatures 
whose godless lives I'd now give my own 
to save. Together, if we set our minds to 
work, there's no knowing what we ma^Ti't 



204 ADAM AND EVE. 



do yet. Warrants have been squashed^ 
and pardons given, when men have reached 
the very gallows' foot; and as for getting in, 
why Mr. Osborne knows Newo^ate Prison 
every inch, from going there with old Silas 
Told, when he was living, and he'll do any- 
thing for me, so there'll be no fear about 
that. And you know^ me, Eve ; you know 
how when I'm set upon a thing I strain my 
utmost nerve to get it done ?' and pausing, 
he stood watching with mingled hope and 
fear the effect of his words ; first, the flush of 
spreading colour, then the quivering mouth 
and eyes, and finally the rush of tears 
which lifted up and cleared away that 
stone-like gloom. A ray of hope seemed 
once more near, and catching at the feeblest 
chance of being brought again face to face 
w4th Adam, Eve, unable to speak, stretched 
out her hand, which Keuben took, grasped 
it almost to pain, then let it go, and with it 



ADAM AND EVE. 205 

every hope of love that Hngered still for 
Eve. 

The rest of the time was spent in ex- 
planations of the various incidents relating 
to the all- engrossing event, the details 
which bore upon it, the circumstances 
which surrounded it, until, from following 
out all these into their different channels, 
Reuben began to have a clearer conception 
of the men, their characters, their indi- 
vidual virtues and collective failings, grow- 
ing interested in them almost against his 
will. The hour was late before he recol- 
lected that until he reached his home he 
could hardly settle his plans, so as to se- 
cure an entrance into the prison on the 
following day. 

Bidding Eve good-night, he left the 
house, and walked away, only stopping at 
the turn of the street to step into the road, 
and cast his wistful gaze uj) to the win- 



206 ADAM AND EVE. 

dow of the room, which to him now was as 
the tomb of his dead love. 

An ordinary working-man standing 
in an obscure street is not a figure 
to arouse much interest, and Keuben's 
stoUd face gave httle index to the varied 
emotions which surged within his trou- 
bled heart. He was able to return the 
gruff good - night the watchman gave, 
and the old man, passing on, went 
wondering as to the cause of such anxious 
survey on Reuben's part. For as he stood 
his thoughts ran here and there, and by the 
magic of their power showed to his view 
the long-gone joys of other days. He 
watched the struggling birth of love, 
scorched himself in its flame, and felt by 
turns the tortures and delights its presence 
gives to those who live on hope alone ; 
then sadly saw it fade from out his sight, 
sicken and faint almost to death, and yet 



ADAM AND EVE, 207 

it did not die until by that one action he 
had robbed it of hfe and killed it evermore. 
Yes, love was dead, and love was Eve ; 
and for Keuben May the Eve he had loved 
so fondly lived no longer. 




CHAPTER X. 




URING the time which had 
elapsed since the night on which 
Eve Pascal and Reuben May 
renewed their bond of friendship, many an 
anxious incident had occurred to test its 
value and cement its strength. 

Jerrem and Adam were familiar names 
to Reuben now, and the men who bore 
them were often before his eyes and con- 
stantly in his thoughts. Prepared as Reu- 
ben had been for undergoing much awk- 
wardness in delivering himself of the tale 



ADAM AND EVE. 209 

he had to tell, he found he had greatly 
underrated the pain and humiliation he 
actually felt when, through the interest of 
his friend, he found himself within the walls 
of Newgate and in the presence of Adam. 
Reuben was no coward, yet it needed all 
the strength of his strictly disciphned mind, 
to open up and lay bare before a rival's eyes 
those wounds which love had made, and 
time had had no space to heal. 

He shrunk from placing in front of Adam 
the picture of himself and Eve, as they 
had stood in the days when, Adam all un- 
known, the balance of a happy future seemed 
trembling still within the hand of Fate ; 
and as he spoke, from time to time he paused, 
hoping some word or sign would make 
his task more easy : but Adam never spoke 
nor turned aside his eyes, and under that 
fixed oraze Reuben was forced to tell his 
tale out to the end, constraining his pride 

VOL. III. 54 



210 ADAM AND EVE. 

to give out word for word what Eve had 
said in Adam's praise, and searing the 
green memory of his love by making his 
lips repeat those vows which she had told 
him bound her to another. 

At length the task was ended, the jea- 
lous rage, the mad revenge, was all con- 
fessed, and satisfied that, whatever guilt 
it might please Adam to lay to his charge, 
he had at least shown that Eve was 
free from any shadoAV of stain, Reuben 
paused, and the two so strangely linked 
stood looking at each other with envy, 
jealousy, distrust clouding their minds, 
while a chord of sympathy drew them 
together, as they recognised a similitude in 
their actions which made each self-abase- 
ment uttered find an echo in its listener's 
breast. Proud, stern, unyielding to emo- 
tion as both these men had lived, it was not 
in them to take comfort in the shifts and 



ADAM AND EVE. 211 

excuses weaker natures find; the heaiis that 
had refused Pity for their neighbours would 
not entreat her because they now stood in 
need. As they had judged their fellows, so 
they arraigned themselves, and thus unwit- 
tingly rendered the first atonement man is 
called upon to make. The sight of Adam's 
strong, powerful form shaken and bowed 
down by the remorse he strove in vain to 
control moved Reuben strangely. The hag- 
gard pallor of his striking face, the sunken 
eyes, the untasted food, the unslej)t-in bed, 
each told its tale of misery and woe, and 
opened out to Keuben a depth of despair 
his own experience hitherto had furnished 
him with no gauge to measure. What if 
with no further warning he fetched up 
Eve to Adam's aid — the thought w^ould 
bear no hesitation, a thousand jealous 
* Noes' battled with the suggestion; but 
Reuben's better self resolved to have its 

54—2 



212 ADAM AND EVE, 

way, and seizing the opportunity of Adam's 
head being bent down in his arms, Reuben 
went swiftly out and along down to the 
keeper's room, where Eve had been left im- 
patiently awaiting his return. 

Although the grating of the hinge 
roused Adam, he neither stirred nor 
moved until, satisfied by the unbroken 
silence that Reuben had left him to him- 
self, he ventured to raise his head. 
Where could he go ? where hide himself 
from human gaze ? And as the thought of 
all his shame came crowding to his mind, 
he started up and wildly stared around, 
and then around again, seeing each time 
the walls, which looked so near, draw 
nearer still. No hope, no hope ! 
here he must live, until the hour when 
those who brought him here would drag 
him forth to swear away his comrade's 
life. O God ! how helpless he felt ; and 



ADAM AND E VE. 21 3 

as he let himself drop down each limb 
gave way, and nerveless fell, as if dejection 
claimed him for her own. The time had 
been when Adam's mind was racked by 
thoughts of what lay in the hearts of those 
he had left behind; their pictured hatred 
and contempt stung him to madness ; the 
words they would say, the curses they were 
uttering, seemed ever ringing in his ears. 
But Reuben's tale had for the time swept 
this away, and filled its place with dark 
remorse of what he had done to Jerrem. 
True, Reuben had shown that Jerrem's 
hand had wrought his own and their de- 
struction, but what of that ? Adam through 
him had wreaked his vengeance on them 
all — had, Judas-like, delivered them to 
death ; henceforth, branded and disgraced, 
he must be an outcast or a wanderer. As 
this fallen spectre of himself rose up and 
flitted in his sight, a cr\^ of wild despair 



214 ADAM AND EVE, 

burst forth, wrenched from the depths of 
his proud heart — a cry which some one 
near sent echoing back, and as it came 
his hands w^ere caught, and Pity seemed 
to stretch her arms, and fold him to her 
breast. 

Was it a nightmare he was waking from ? 
some hideous dream in which our bodies 
slumber, while our fancies live a lifetime ? 
Would this vision of Eve (for Eve it was 
who knelt close by his side, her arms around 
his neck) melt away and fade as many a 
one of her had done before ? She calls 
him love — her love, the husband of her 
heart — what, he, this guilty outcast ! can 
he be this to any one, and most of all to 
Eve? 

A finger's touch seemed laid upon the 
veil which hitherto had shut out hope from. 



ADAM AND EVE. 215 

Adam's view, and as it shrivelled up and 
rolled away, the light revealed that Mercy 
still sat throned on high ; and bowing down 
his head on Eve's neck, he let his stricken 
soul take comfort in the thought. 

But while Adam v/as thus cast down 
under suffering, sorrow had taken but a 
slight hold on Jerrem, who, after the first 
shock produced by the horrors of a place 
then branded as ' the darkest seat of woe 
this side of hell,' gradually regained his old 
elasticity, and was soon ready to treat, 
laugh, and drink with all who came near 
him. 

His merry jokes, his quaint sea songs, 
the free handling he gave to his plentiful 
supply of money, all served to insure his 
popularity ; so that instead of the man sunk 
under misery and despair whom "Reuben, 
after leaving Adam, had girded himself up 



216 ADAM AND EVE. 

to encounter, he came upon Jerrem rollicking 
and gay, a prime favourite with all the 
authorities, and a choice spirit amid the 
crew of tried and untried prisoners, who in 
those days crowded together the foul wards 
of Newgate. 

Fresh from the sight of Adam's dark 
remorse, filled with compunction at the 
thought of all the ills their joint passions 
had hurled on Jerrem's head, Reuben had 
invested Jerrem with a sense of wrong, 
to make reparation for which he had 
come prepared to offer whatever sacri- 
fice he should demand. To find the 
man for whom all this feeling had been 
conjured up reckless and unconcerned, 
casting oaths against his ill-luck one 
moment, and cutting jokes at his possible 
fate the next, jarred upon Reuben terribly, 
and made him at once decide that it would 
be worse than useless to urge upon him any 



ADAM AND EVE. 217 

necessity for taking thought for his soul 
when he was so utterly reckless as to what 
would become of his body. The story 
Reuben had to tell of himself and Eve, the 
betrayal, and the suspicions it had aroused 
against Eve in Adam, merely affected 
Jerrem as a matter for surprise and 
curiosity. He seemed pleased to hear that 
Eve Avas close at hand, but still expressed 
no wish to see her. He talked about Adam, 
and, with a painful absence of all malice, 
told Reuben to say to him that he'd best 
lay it thick on his back, so that the judge 
and jury would let the other chaps go free. 
The circumstance of being brought to 
London to be tried seemed to aftbrd him 
immense satisfaction — a thing, he said, that 
hadn't happened for sixty years and more, 

when old swung for it ; and then he 

fell to wondering how soon that might be 
his fate, and if so, how many from Polperro 



218 ADAM AND EVE. 



would make the stretch to come so far. He'd 
promise them it shouldn't be for nothing : 
he'd show the Cornish men that he could 
cut his capers game. Only one subject 
seemed able to sober or subdue his reckless 
spirit, and this was any mention of Joan 
or rjncle Zebedee : to them the poor soul 
seemed to cling with all the love his nature 
could command. And when Keuben, in- 
structed by Eve, told him how stricken 
down the old man lay, and further on 
promised to write for him all the messages 
he wished to send to Joan, a heart of wax 
seemed given to his keeping, in which it 
now must be his care to mould the little 
good there yet was time to teach. And so 
it happened that in all his future visits — 
and every hour that Reuben had to spare 
was given up to Jerrem — Joan was the 
theme that threaded all their discourse ; 
and by her power Jerrem's soft heart and 



ADAM AND EVE. 219 

softer nature became to Reuben as an 
open page, wherein he read of actions in 
which good and bad were so mixed up and 
jumbled, that, in the ver}^ midst of his 
reproof and condemnation, Keuben was 
often forced to stand abashed before some 
act of generous pity which found no echo 
in his former life. And out of this humility, 
which grew in strength, there sprang forth 
greater merits than from all the wear\' 
efforts he made at working out his own 
atonement ; for Reuben, like Adam, had 
been over-satisfied about his own rectitude, 
and took pride in the knowledge, that, if 
ever he had committed a wrong, he had 
acknowledged it freely and expiated it to 
the uttermost farthing — while Jerrem, for 
the first time in his life brougrht to see 
guilt in what he had counted pleasure, scarce 
dared to listen to a hope of mercy for him- 
self^ but rather craved Reuben to beg it 



220 ADAM AND EVE. 

for the many who had been thoughtless 
sharers in his folly. His ruling desire was 
to see Joan once more, and no sooner was 
he told that the Admiralty Session had 
begun, and that his day of trial — although 
not fixed — was near at hand, than he 
begged Keuben to write and ask Joan to 
delay her promised visit no longer ; and 
this Beuben did, adding on his own ac- 
count that, from what the lawyer said, it 
would be best she came at once, by the 
coach which would reach London on the 
following Thursday-week, on which day 
Keuben would be waiting to receive 
her. 

Now, at the onset of this disaster, had 
such a letter reached Polperro, not a man 
in the place but, short of knowing it would 
cost his life, would have risked all else to 
go to London, and if Jerrem was to die, 
give him courage by mustering round their 



ADAM AND E VE, 22 1 

comrade at the last. But the downpour of 
disaster had cowed these, daring spirits, and 
the men ^Yho had not known what fear 
meant so long as success was secure, now 
trembled and gave way, under the super- 
stitious certainty that ill-luck was following 
them and misfortune had marked them for 
her ow^n. Their energies paralysed, they 
succumbed to what they looked upon as 
Fate, and in most cases were seized with- 
out a struggle, and led off to the nearest 
prisons without an effort on their own 
part towards resistance. 

The money over which — from the small 
scope for spending it — they had seemed so 
lavish and reckless, when needed for 
lawyers and counsel and bribes, went but 
a small w^ay ; and though they made a 
common purse of all their hoards, not a day 
passed without some house being stripped 
of the substance which adorned it, so that 



•222 ADAM AND EVE. 



money might be got for the husband, the 
son, the brothers, who had brought these 
treasures home. 

The women, on then' knees, pressed on 
the farmers' wives their chintzes, their 
lace, their gaudy stock of jewellery ; and 
when this market failed, toiled along to 
Liskeard, Plymouth and Launceston, 
carrying their china, silver-plate, and bowls, 
in the hope of finding somebody to buy 
them. 

With one, often two, revenue cutters 
always in sight, landing parties of king's 
men, who — recalling ugly thoughts of the 
hated press-gang — roamed hither and 
thither, ready to seize any one Avho hap- 
pened to show his face ; with half the 
husbands, sons and brothers in Bodmin 
Gaol or Plymouth Clink, and the rest 
skulking in farm-houses or lying hidden in 
the secret places ; with plenty vanishing 



ADAM AND E VE. 223 



and poverty drawing nigh ; the past cir- 
cumstances which had led to this desola- 
tion were swallowed up in the present 
misery it had entailed upon them ; and 
though every one now knew the whole 
story as it stood — how that through 
Jerrem writing to Eve, she had had it in 
her power to tell Reuben May, her former 
lover, who, led on by jealousy, had be- 
trayed them to the revenue men, so 
familiar had Reuben's good services to 
Jerrem become known, that it was taken 
as only one more of his many friendly 
actions that he should write to Joan, 
urci-ingf her to come to London without 
delay, and promising to meet her and see 
that she was taken care of If any among 
them thought that Joan would go probably 
to Eve's home, they made no mention of it ; 
for Eve's name was by a tacit understandhig 
banished from their mouths, and the 



'224: ADAM AND EVE. 

memory of her lay as a seal to that dark 
sepulchre wherein, with bitter scorn and 
hate, Adam lay buried. 

There was no question now of Uncle 
^ebedee going, for the confinement, the 
excitement, and the degradation had been 
too much for the old man, whose free and 
happy life had never known trouble or 
restraint, and his mind had gradually 
weakened under the burden imposed upon 
it ; so that now, except when some unex- 
pected incident roused the flickering flame 
of memory, the past few months were 
blotted from his mind, and, in company 
with Jonathan — who, broken down by ill- 
usage, and turned out of prison to die, had 
managed to crawl back to the friends he 
knew he should find shelter with — he 
roamed about harmless and contented, 
always watching for the Lottery s return, 
and promising, when she did come back, 



ADAM AND EVE. 2'2: 



that he would give them all a fling such as 
Polperro had not seen for many a day. 

It was an easy matter to cheat him now, 
and when, Joan's journey all arranged, 
she stepped into the boat which was to 
take her round to Plymouth, and left old 
Zebedee standino- on the shore, raisino^ his 
thin cracked voice to fetch her ear with 
cheery messages for Jerrem and for Adam, 
whom she was going to meet, her cup of 
bitterness seemed to overflow. 



VOL. III. 55 




CHAPTEE XI. 




|ROM the day on which Adam 
knew that the date of J err em's 
trial was fixed, all the hope 
which the sight of Eve had rekindled was 
again completely extinguished, and, refus- 
ing every attempt at consolation, he threw 
himself into an abyss of despair a hundred- 
fold more dark and bitter than before. 

The thought that he — captain and leader 
as he had been — should stand in court con- 
fronted by his comrades and neighbours (for 
Adam, ignorant of the disasters which had 



ADAM AND EVE. 



overtaken them, believed half Polperro to 
be on their way to London), and there 
swear away Jerrem's life and turn informer, 
was somethino' too terrible to be dwelt on 
with even outward tranquillity, and, aban- 
donino' every thi no- which had hitherto sus- 
tained him, he gave himself up to all the 
terrors of remorse and despair. It was 
in vain for Reuben to reason, or for Eve to 
plead ; so long as they could suggest no 
means by which this dreaded ordeal could 
be averted, Adam was deaf to all hope of 
consolation. There was but one subject 
which interested him, and only on one sub- 
ject could he be got to speak, and that was 
the chances there still remained of Jerrem's 
life being spared ; and to furnish him 
with some food for this hope, Eve be- 
gan to loiter at the gates, talk to the 
warders and the turnkeys, and mingle 
with the many groups who on some busi- 

55—2 



228 ADAM AND EVE. 

ness or pretext were always assembled about 
the yard, or stood idling in the various pas- 
sages with which the prison was intersected. 
One morning it came to her mind, how 
would it be for Adam to escape, and so not 
be there to prove the accusation he had 
made of Jerrem having shot the man? With 
scarce more thought than she had bestowed 
on many another passing suggestion which 
seemed for the moment practical and solid, 
but as she turned it round lost shape and 
floated into air, Eve made the suggestion, 
and to her surprise found it seized on by 
Adam as an inspiration. Wl\y, he'd risk all, 
so that he escaped being set face to f\ice 
with Jerrem and his former mates. Adam 
had but to be assured the strain would not 
be more than Eve's strength could bear, be- 
fore he had adopted with joy her bare sug- 
gestion, clothed it with possibility, and by it 
seemed to regain all his past energy. Could 



ADAM Ai\D EVE. 229 

he but get away, and Jerrem's life be spared, 
all hope of happiness would not be over. 
In some of those distant lands to which 
people were then beginning to go, life might 
beo^in afresh. And as his thouo-hts found 
utterance in speech, he held out his hand 
to Eve, and in it she laid her own ; and 
Adam needed nothing more to tell him that 
whither he went, there Eve too would o-o. 
There was no need for vows and protesta- 
tions now betw^een these two, for thouo-h to 
each the other's heart lay bare, a word oi 
love scarce ever crossed their lijos. Life 
seemed too sad and time too precious to be 
w^hiled away in pleasant speeches, and often 
when together — burdened by the weight of 
all they had to say, yet could not talk about 
— the two would sit for hours and neither 
speak a word. But with this proposition of 
escape a new channel was given to them, 
and as the}^ discussed their different plans, 



230 ADAM AND EVE. 



the dreadful shadow which at times had 
hung between them was rolled away and 
lifted out of sight. Inspired by the pros- 
pect of action, of doing something, Adam 
roused himself to master all the difficulties; 
his old foresight and caution began to 
revive, and the project which had on one 
day looked like a desperate extremity, grew 
by the end of a week into a well-arranged 
plan whose success seemed more than pos- 
sible. Filled with anxiety for Eve, Reuben 
gave no hearty sanction to the experiment, 
besides which he felt certain that now 
neither Adam's absence nor presence would 
in any way affect Jerrem's fate ; added to 
which, if the matter was detected it might 
go hard with Adam himself But his argu- 
ments proved nothing to Eve, who, confident 
of success, only demanded from him the 
promise of secrecy; after which she thought, 
as some questions might be put to him, the 



ADAJI AND EVE. 231 



less he knew the less he would have to 
conceal. 

Although a prisoner, inasmuch as Hberty 
was denied to him, Adam was in no way 
subjected to that strict surveillance to 
which those who had broken the law were 
supposed to be submitted. It was of his 
own free will that he disregarded the vari- 
ous privileges which lay open to him ; 
others in his place would have frequented 
the passages, hung about the yards, and 
grown famihar with the tap, where spirits 
were openly bought and sold. Money 
could do much in those days of lax disci- 
pline, and the man who could pay, and could 
give, need have very few wants unsatisfied. 
But Adam's only desire was to be left un- 
disturbed and alone, and as this entailed no 
undue amount of trouble after their first 
curiosity had been satisfied, it was not 
thought necessary to deny him this privi- 



ADAM AND EVE. 



\Q^<d. From constantly going in and out, 
most of the officials inside the prison knew 
Eve, while to but very few was Adam's 
face familiar ; and it was on this fact, aided 
by the knowledge that through favour of a 
gratuity friends were frequently permitted 
to outstay their usual hour, that most of 
their hopes rested. Each day she came, 
Eve brought some portion of the dis- 
guise which was to be adopted ; and then 
having learnt from Keuben that the Mary 
Jane had arrived, and was lying at the wharf 
unloading, not knowing what better to do, 
they decided that she should go to Captain 
Triggs and ask him, in case Adam could get 
away, whether he would let him come on 
board his vessel and give him shelter there 
below. 

' Waal no,' said Triggs, ' I woan't do 
that, 'cos they as I'se got here might smell 
un out ; but I'll tell 'ee what — I knaws a 



ADAM AND EVE. * 23a 

chap as has in many ways bin beholden to 
me Tore now, and I reckon if I gives un 
the cue he'll do the job for 'ee/ 

' But do you think he's to be trusted V 
Eve asked. 

* Waal, that rests on how small a part 
you'm fo'ced to tell un of,' said Triggs, 'and 
how much you makes it warth his while. 
I'm blamed if I'd go bail for un myself, but 
that won't be no odds 'gen' Adam's goin' ; 
'tis just the place for he. 'Tud niver do to 
car'y a pitch-pot down and set un in the 
midst o' they who couldn't bide his stink.' 

' And the crew V said Eve, Avincing^ 
under Captain Triggs' figurative language. 

' Awh, the crew's right enuf — a set o' 
gashly smudge-faced raskils that's near half 
Maltee and t'other Lascar Injuns. Any gaol- 
bird that flies their way 'ull find they's all 
of a feather. But here,' he added, puzzled by 
the event, ' how's this that you'm still mixed 



234 ADAM AND EVE. 



up with Adam so ? I thought 'twas all 
'long o' you and Keuben May that the 
Lottery s landin' got blowed about ?' 

Eve shook her head. * Be sure,' she said, 
^ 'twas never in me to do Adam any 
harm.' 

' And you'm goin' to stick to un now 
through thick and thin ? 'Twill niver do 
for un, ye knaw, to set his foot on Cornish 
ground agen f 

' He knows that,' said Eve, ' and if he 
gets away, we shall be married and go 
across the seas to some new part, where no 
•one can tell what brought us from our 
home.' 

Triggs gave a significant nod. 'Lord!' 
he exclaimed, ' but that's a poor look-out for 
such a bowerly maid as you be. Wouldn't it 
be better for 'ee to stick by yer friends 
'bout here than ' 

* I haven't got anv friends,' interrupted 



ADAM AND EVE. 235 



Eve promptly, ' excepting it's Adam and 
Joan and Uncle Zebedee.' 

' Ah, poor old Zebedee !' siglied Triggs ; 
' 'tis all dickey with he. The day I started 
I see Sammy Tucker to Fowey, and he was 
tellin' that th' ole chap was gone reg lar 
tottlin' like, and can't tell thickee fra that ; 
and as for Joan Hocken, he says you 
wouldn't knaw her for the same. And they's 
tooked poor foolish Jonathan, as is more 
mazed than iver, to live with 'em; and 
Mrs. Tucker, as used to haggle with every- 
body so, tends on 'em all hand and foot, 
and her's given up praichin 'bout religion 
and that, and 's turned quite neighbourly, 
and, so long as her can save her daughter, 
thinks nothin s too hot nor too heavy.' 

' Dear Joan 1' sighed Eve ; ' she's started 
by the coach on her way up here now.' 

' Whether she hath or no 1' exclaimed 
Triggs in surprise. ' Then take my word 



1>36 ADAM AND EVE. 

tliey's heerd that Jerrem's to be hanged, 
and Joan's comin' up to be all ready to 
hand for 't.' 

^ No, not that,' groaned Eve, for at the 
mere mention of the word the vascue dread 
seemed to shape itself into a certainty. 
^Oh, Captain Triggs, don't say that if Adam 
gets off you don't think Jerrem's life will 
be spared.' 

* Wa-al, my poor maid, us must hope so,' 
said the compassionate captain ; * but 'tis 
the worst o' they doin's that sooner or 
later th' endin of 'em must come. 'T would 
never do to let 'em prosper allays/ he 
added with impressive certainty, * or where 
'ud be the use o' parsons praichin' up 'bout 
heaven and hell % Why now, us likes good 
liquor cheap to Fowey, and wance 'pon a 
time us had it too ; but that han't bin for 
twenty year. Our day's gone by, and so 
'ull theirs be now ; and th' excise 'ull come,. 



ADAM AND EVE. 237 

and revenoos 'nil settle down, and folks be 
fo'ced to take to lousterin' for the bit o' 
bread they ates, and live quiet and pace- 
able, as good neighbours should. So try and 
take heart, and if so be that Adam can 
give they Bailey chaps the go by, tell un 
to come longs here, and us 'uU be odds with 
any o' they that happens to be follerin' to 
his heels.' 

Charmed with this friendly promise. 
Eve said ^ Good-bye,' leaving the captain 
puzzled with speculations on the female 
sex, and the many curious contradictions 
which seem to influence their actions ; while 
the hour being now too late to return to 
the prison, she took her way to her own 
room, thinking it best to begin the prepara- 
tions which in case of Adam's escape, and 
any sudden departure, it would be necessary 
to have completed. 

Perhaps it was her interview with Cap- 



238 ADAM AND EVE. 



tain Triggs, the sight of the v/harf and 
the ships, which took her thoughts back 
and made them bridge the gulf which 
divided her past hfe from her present 
self. Could the girl she saw in that 
shadowy past — headstrong, confident, im- 
patient of suffering, and unsympathetic 
with sorrow — be this same Eve who walked 
along with all hope and thought of self 
merged in another's happiness and welfare % 
Where was the vanity, where the tricks and 
coquetries ? — passports to that ideal exis- 
tence after which in the old days she had 
so thirsted. Trampled out of sight, and 
choked beneath the fair blossoms of a 
higher life, which, as in many a human 
nature, had needed sorrow, humiliation, 
and a great watering of tears, before there 
could spring forth the flowers for a fruit 
which should one day ripen into great per- 
fection. 



ADAM AND EVE. 239 

No wonder then that she should be 
shaken by a doubt of her own identity, and 
having reached her room, she paused upon 
the threshold and looked around as if to 
satisfy herself by all those silent witnesses 
which made it truth. 

There was the chair in which she had so 
often sat, plying her needle with such tardy 
grace, while her impatient thoughts did 
battle with the humdrum narrow life she 
led. 

How she had beat ao^ainst the fate which 
seemed to promise naught but that dull 
round of commonplace events in which 
her early years had passed away ! How 
as a gall and fret had come the thought of 
Reuben's proffered love, because it shadowed 
forth the level of respectable routine, the 
life she then most dreaded ! 

To be courted and souo^ht after : to call 
forth love, jealousy, and despair ; to be 



'240 ADAM AND EVE. 

looked up to, thought well of, praised, ad- 
mired — these were the delights she had 
•craved, and these the longings she had had 
granted. And a sigh from the depths of 
that chastened heart rendered the bitter 
tribute paid by all to satiated vanity and 
out-lived desire. 

The dingy walls, the ill-assorted furni- 
ture (her mother's pride in which had 
sometimes vexed her, sometimes made her 
laugh), now looked like childhood's friends, 
whose faces stamp themselves upon our 
inmost hearts. The light no longer seemed 
obscure, the room no longer gloomy ; for 
each thing in it now was flooded by the 
tender light of memory — that wondrous 
gift to man, which those who only sail 
along life's summer sea can never know in 
all the heights and depths revealed to 
storm-tossed hearts. 

' What, you've come back !' a voice said 



ADAM AND EVE. 241 

in her ear, and looking round Eve saw it 
was Keuben, who had entered unperceived. 

' There's nothing fresh gone wrong V he 
asked. 

'No, nothing ;' but the sad smile she tried 
to give him welcome with was so akin to 
tears that Keuben's face assumed a look 
of doubt. ' 'Tis only that I'di thinking 
how I'm chanofed from what I was,' said 
Eve. 'Why, once I couldn't bear this 
room and all the things about it ; but now, 
O Reuben ! my heart seems like to break 
because — perhaps 'twill soon now come to 
saying good-bye to all of it for ever.' 

Keuben winced. ' You're fixed to go> 
then r 

' Yes, where Adam goes I shall go too — 
don't you think I should ? What else is 
left for me to do V 

' You feel then you'd be happy — off with 
him — away from all and — everybody else V 

VOL. III. bQ 



242 ADAM AND E VE. 



* Happy! should I be happy to know 
he'd gone alone ? happy to know I'd driven 
him away to some place where I wouldn't 
go myself f and Eve paused, shaking her 
head before she added, * If he can make 
another start in life — try and begin 
again ' 

^ You ought to help him to it,' said 
Reuben, promptly, ' that's very plain to see. 
O Eve ! do you mind the times when 
you and me have talked of what we'd like 
to do — how, never satisfied with what 
went on around, we wanted to be altogether 
such as some of those we'd heard and read 
about % The way seems almost opened up 
to you ; but what shall I do when all this is 
over, and you are gone away % I can't go 
back and stick to trade again, working for 
nothing more but putting victuals in my- 
self 

For a moment Eve did not speak ; then, 



ADAM AND EVE. 243 

with a sudden movement, she turned, say- 
ing to Reuben : 

' There's something that, before our lives 
are at any moment parted, I've wanted to 
say to you, Keuben. 'Tis that until now, 
this time while we've been altogether here, 
I've never known what your worth is — 
what you would be to any one who'd got 
the heart to value what you'd give. Of 
late it has often seemed that I should think 
but very small of one who'd had the chance 
of your liking, and yet didn't know the 
proper value of such goodness.' 

Keuben gave a look of disavowal, and 
Eve continued, adding with a little hesi- 
tation : 

' You mustn't think it strange in me for 
saying this. I couldn't tell you if you 
didn't know how everything lies between 
Adam and myself; but ever since this 
trouble's come about, all my thoughts 

56—2 



244 ADAM AND EVE. 



seem changed, and people look quite dif- 
ferent now to what they did before ; and 
most of all, I've learnt to know the friend 
I've got, and always had, in you, Beuben.' 

Reuben did not answer for a moment. 
He seemed struggling to keep back some- 
thing he was prompted to speak of 

' Eve,' he said at length, ' don't think 
that I've not made mistakes, and great 
ones, too. When first I fought to battle 
down my leaning towards you, why was 
it ? Not because of doubting that 'twould 
ever be returned, but 'cos I held myself too 
good a chap in all my thoughts and ways 
to be taken up with such a butterfly con- 
cern as I took you to be. I'd never have 
believed then that 3^ou'd have acted as I've 
seen you act. I thought that love with 
you meant who could give you the finest 
clothes to wear, and let you rule the roast 
the easiest ; but you have shown me that 



ADAM AND EVE. 245 

you are made of better woman's stuff than 
that. And, after all, a man thinks better 
of himself for mounting high than stooping 
to pick up what can be had for asking any 
day.' 

* No, no, Keuben ; your good opinion is 
more than I deserve,' said Eve, her memory 
stinging her with past recollections. * If 
you want to see a dear, kind-hearted, un- 
selfish girl, wait until Joan comes. I do so 
hope that you will take to her. I think 
you will, after what you've been to Jerrem 
and to Adam. I want you and Joan to 
like each other.' 

' I don't think there's much fear of that,' 
said Reuben. * Jerrem's spoke so freely 
about Joan, that I seem to know her before 
ever having seen her. Let me see, her 
mind was at one time set on Adam, wasn't 

itr 

' I think that she was very fond of 



246 ADAM AND EVE. 

Adam/ said Eve, colouring ; ^ and so far as 
that goes, I don't know that there is any 
difference now. I'm sure she'd lay her life 
down if it would do him good.' 

^ Poor soul !' sighed Reuben, drawn by a 
friendly feeling to sympathise with Joan's 
unlucky love. ' Her cup's been full, and no 
mistake, of late.' 

* Did Jerrem seem to feel it much that 
Uncle Zebedee 'd been took so strange V 
asked Eve. 

' I didn't tell him more than I could 
help,' said Reuben. ^ As much as possible, 
I made it out to him that for the old man 
to come to London wouldn't be safe, and 
the fear of that seemed to pacify him at 
once.' 

^ I haven't spoken of it to Adam yet,' 
said Eve. ' He hasn't asked about his 
coming, so I thought I'd leave the telling 
till another time. His mind seems set on 



ADAM AND E VE. 247 



nothing but getting off, and by it setting 
Jerrem free.' 

But Reuben made no rejoinder to the 
questioning tone of Eve's words, and after 
a few minutes' pause he waived the subject 
by revertino' to the description which Eve 
had given of Joan, so that, in case he had 
to meet her alone, he might recognise her 
without difficulty. Eve repeated the de- 
scription, dwelling with loving preciseness 
on the various features and points by 
which Joan might be known ; and then 
Reuben, having some work to do, got up 
to say good-bye. 

'Good-bye,' said Eve, holding out her 
hand. ' Good-bye. Every time I say it 
now I seem to wonder if 'tis to be good- 
bye indeed.' 

' Why, no ; in any way you'd wait until 
the trial was over ? 

^ Yes, I forofot. Of course we should.' 



248 ADAM AND EVE. 

* Well, then, do you think I'd let you go 
without a word ? Ah ! Eve, no. What- 
ever others are, nobody's yet pushed you 
from your place, nor never will so long as 
my life lasts.' 




CHAPTEK XII. 




T length the dreaded day was 
over, the trial was at an end, 
and, in spite of every effort made, 
Jerrem condemned to die. The hopes 
raised by the knowledge of Adam's es- 
cape seemed crowned with success, when, 
to the court's dismay, it was announced 
that the prisoner's accuser could not be 
produced ; he had mysteriously disappeared 
the evening before, and in spite of a most 
vigorous search was nowhere to be found. 
But with minds already resolved to make 
this hardened smuggler's fate a warning and 



250 ADAM AND EVE. 

example to all such as should henceforth 
dare the law, one of the cutter's crew, 
wrought upon by the fear lest Jerrem 
should escape and bafEe the vengeance they 
had vowed to take, was got to swear that 
Jerrem was the man who fired the fatal shot ; 
and though it was shown that the night 
was dark and recognition next to impossible, 
this evidence was held conclusive to prove 
the crime, and nothing now remained but 
to condemn the culprit. The judge's words 
came slowly forth, making the stoutest there 
shrink back, and let that arrow from the 
bow of death glance by^ and set its mark on 
him upon whose face the crowd now turned 
to gaze. 

' Can it be that he is stunned ? or is he 
hardened ?' 

For Jerrem stands all unmoved and calm; 
while, dulled by the sound of rushing waters, 
the words the judge has said come boom- 



ADAM AND EVE. 251 

ing back and back again ; a sickly tremor 
creeps through, every Hmb, and makes it 
nerveless; a sense of growing weight presses 
the flesh down as a burden on the fainting 
spirit ; one instant a thousand faces, crowd- 
ing close, keep out the air; the next, they 
have all receded out of sight back into misty 
space, and he is left alone, with all around 
faded and grown confused, and all beneath 
him slipping and giving way. Suddenly 
a sound rouses him back to hfe — a voice has 
smote his ear and cleaved his inmost soul ; 
and lifting his head, his eyes are met by 
sight of Joan, who with a piercing shriek has 
fallen back death-like and pale in Reuben s 
out-stretched arms. 

Then Jerrem knows that hope is past, 
and he must die, and in one flash his fate, 
in all its misery and shame, stands out 
before him, and reeling he totters, to sink 
down senseless, and be carried off* to that 
dismal cell allotted to those condemned 



252 ADAM AND E VE. 

to death; while Reuben, as best he can, 
manages to get Joan out of court and into 
the open air, where she gradually conies 
back to life again, and is able to listen to 
such poor comfort as Reuben's sad heart 
can find to give her. For by reason of those 
eventful circumstances, which serve to ce- 
ment friendships by suddenly overthrowing 
the barriers Time must otherwise gradually 
wear away, Reuben May and Joan Hocken 
have (in the w^eek which has intervened 
between her arrival and this day of trial) 
become more intimate and thoroughly 
acquainted than if in an ordinary way they 
had known each other for years. 

A stranger in a large city, with not one 
familiar face to greet her, who does not 
know the terrible feeling of desolation which 
made poor Joan hurry through the crowded 
streets, shrinking away from their bustle 
and throng towards Reuben, the one person 



ADAM AND EVE. 253 

she had to turn to for sympathy, advice, 
assistance, and consolation ? With that 
spirit of perfect trust which her own large 
heart gave her the certain assurance of 
receiving, Joan i^laced implicit reliance in 
all Reuben said and did ; and seeing this, 
and receiving an inward satisfaction from 
the sight, Reuben involuntarily slipped into 
a familiarity of speech and manner very 
opposed to the stiff reserve he usually main- 
tained towards strangers. 

Ten days were given before the day on 
which Jerrem was to die, and during this 
time, through the various interests raised 
in his behalf, no restriction was put upon 
the intercourse between him and his friends ; 
so that, abandoning everything for the poor 
soul's welfare, Reuben, Joan, and Jerrem 
spent hour after hour in the closest inter- 
course. Happily, in times of great extre- 
mity the power of realising our exact 



254 ADAM AND EVE. 



situation is mostly denied to us ; and in 
the case of Joan and Jerrem, although sur- 
rounded by the terrors and within the 
outposts of that dreaded end, it was nothing 
unfrequent to hear a sudden peal of laugh- 
ter, which often would have as sudden an 
end in a great burst of tears. 

To point to hopes and joys beyond the 
grave when every thought is centred 
and fixed on this life's interests and keen 
anxieties, is but a fruitless vain endeavour ; 
and Keuben had to try and rest contented 
in the assurance of Jerrem's perfect forgive- 
ness and goodwill to all who had shown 
him any malice or ill-feeling, to draw some 
satisfaction from the unselfish love he 
showed to Joan, and the deep gratitude he 
now expressed to Uncle Zebedee. 

What would become of them ? he often 
asked, when some word of Joan's revealed 
the altered aspect of their affairs ; and then, 



ADAM AND EVE. 255 

overcome by the helplessness of their forlorn 
condition, he would entreat Keuben to 
stand by them, not to forget Joan, not to 
forsake her. And Reuben, strangely moved 
by sight of this poor gidd}^ nature's over- 
wrought emotion, would try to calm him 
with the ready assurance that while he 
lived Joan should never want a friend ; and 
touched by his words, the two would clasp 
his hands together, telling each other of all 
the kindness he had showed them, praying- 
God would pay him back in blessings for 
his goodness. Xor were theirs the only 
lips which spoke of gratitude to Reuben 
May ; his name had now become familiar to 
many who through his means were kept 
from being ignorant of the sad fate which 
awaited their boon companion, their prime 
favourite, the once madcap, rollicking Jer- 
rem ; the last one, as Joan often told 
Reuben, whom any in Polperro would have 



256 ADAM AND EVE. 

fixed on for evil to pursue, or misfortune 
to overtake, and about whom all declared 
there must have been ' a hitch in the block 
somewheres, as Fate never intended that 
ill-luck should pitch upon Jerrem.' The 
repetition of their astonishment, their in- 
dignation, and their sympathy, afforded the 
poor fellow the most visible satisfaction, 
harassed as he was becoming by one dread 
which entirely swallowed up the thought 
and fear of death. This ghastly terror was 
the then usual consignment of a body 
after death to the surgeons for dissection, 
and the uncontrollable trepidation which 
would take possession of him each time this 
hideous recollection forced itself upon him, 
although unaccountable to Reuben, was 
most painful for him to witness. What 
difference could it make what became of 
one's body after death ? Reuben would ask 
himself, puzzled to fathom that wonderful 



ADAM AND EVE. 257 

tenderness which some natures feel for the 
flesh which embodies their attractions. But 
Jerrem had felt a passing love for his own 
dear body — vanity of it had been his ruling 
passion, its comeliness his great glory ; so 
much so that even now a positive satisfac- 
tion would have been his, could he have 
pictured himself outstretched and lifeless, 
with lookers-on moved to compassion by 
the dead grace of his winsome face and 
slender limbs. Joan, too, was caught by 
the same infection. Not to lie whole and 
decent in one's coffin — oh, it was an in- 
dignity too terrible for contemplation ! and 
every time they were away from Jerrem 
she would beset E-euben with entreaties 
and questions as to what could be done to 
avoid the catastrophe. 

The one plan he knew of had been tried, 
and tried, too, with repeated success, and 
this was the engaging of a superior force 

VOL. III. 57 



258 ADAM AND EVE. 

to wrest the body from the surgeon's crew 
— a set of sturdy miscreants, with whom to 
do battle a considerable mob was needed ; 
but with money grown very scarce and 
time so short, the thing could not be 
managed, and Reuben tried to tell Joan of 
its impossibility while they two were walking 
to a place in which it had been agreed they 
should find some one with a message from 
Eve, who, together with Adam, was in 
hiding on board the vessel Captain Triggs 
had spoken of But instead of the mes- 
senger. Eve herself arrived, having ventured 
this much with the hope of hearing some^ 
thing that would lessen Adam/s despair 
and grief at learning the fate of Jerrem. 

' Ah, poor sawl !' sighed Joan, as Eve 
ended her dismal account of Adam's sad 
condition ; * 'tis only what I feared to hear 
of But tell un. Eve, to lay it to his heart 
that Jerrem's forgived un every bit, and 



ADAM AND E VE. 259 

don't know what it is to hold a o^rudo^e to 
Adam ; and if T speak of un, he says, 
*' Why, doan't I know it ain't through he, 
but 'cos o' my own headstrong ways and 
they sneaks o' revenoo chaps," who falsely 
swored away his blessed life.' 

' Does he seem to dread it much ?' asked 
Eve ; the sickly fears which filled her 
heart echoed in each whispered word. 

* Not iliat he don't,' said Joan, lifting her 
hand significantly to her throat. ' 'Tis 
after. Oh, Eve !' she gasped, ' ain't it too 
awful to think of their cuttin' up his poor 
dead body into bits ! Call theyselves 
doctors !' she burst out ; ' the gashly 
lot 1 I'll never let wan o' their name 
come nighs't to me agen.' 

^ Oh, Reuben !' gasped Eve, * is it so ? 
Can nothing be done f 

Reuben shook his head. 

' Nothing now,' said Joan ; ' for want o' 

57—2 



260 ADAM AND EVE. 

money^ too, mostly, Eve — and the guineas 
I've a-wasted ! Oh, how the sight o' every 
one rises and chinks in judgment 'gainst 
my ears !' 

' If we'd got the money/ said Reuben, 
soothingly, ' there isn't time. All should be 
settled by to-morrow night, and if some 
one this minute brought the wherewithal, 
I haven't one 'pon whom I dare to lay my 
hand to ask to undertake the job.' 

^ Then 'tis no use harpin' 'pon it any 
more,' said Joan, while Eve gave a sigh 
concurring in what she said, both, of them 
knowing well that if Reuben gave it up, 
the thing must be hopeless indeed. 

Here was another stab for Adam's 
wounded senses, and with a heavy heart 
and step Eve took her way back to him, 
while Reuben and Joan continued to thread 
the streets which took them by a circuitous 
road home to Knight's Passage. 



ADAM AND^E VE. 261 

But no sooner had Eve told Adam of 
this fresh burden laid on poor Jerrem, than 
a new hope seemed to animate him. Some- 
thino' was still to be done I There vet 
remained an atonement which, though it 
cost him his life, he could strive to make 
to Jerrem. Throwino- aside the fear of 
detection which had hitherto kept him 
skulkino* within the little vessel, he set off 
that night to find the Mary Jane, and, 
reofardless of the terrible shame which had 
filled him at the bare thought of confronting 
Triggs or any of his crew, he cast himself 
upon their mercy, beseeching them as men, 
and Cornish men, to do this much for their 
brother-sailor in his sad need and last 
extremity ; and his appeal and the nature 
of it had so touched these quickly-stirred 
hearts, that, forgetful of the contempt and 
scorn with which, in the light of an in- 
former, they had hitherto viewed Adam, 



262 ADAM AND EVE. 

they had one and all sworn to aid him to 
their utmost strength, and to bring to the 
rescue certain others of whom they knew, 
by whose help and assistance success would 
be more probable. 

Therefore it was that, two days before 
the morning of his sentenced death. Eve 
was able to put into Reuben's hand a scrap 
of paper, on which was written Adam's 
vow to Jerrem, that though his own life 
paid the forfeit for it, Jerrem's body should 
be rescued and saved. 

Present as Jerrem's fears had been to 
Keuben's eyes and to his mind, until he 
saw the transport of agitated joy which this 
assurance gave to Jerrem, he had never 
grasped a tithe of the terrible dread which 
during the last few days had taken such 
complete hold of the poor fellow's inmost 
thoughts. Now, as he read again and again 
the words which Adam had written, a 



ADAM AND E VE. 263 

torrent of tears burst forth from his eyes 
in an ecstasy of reHef he caught Joan to his 
heart, wrung Keuben's hand, and from that 
moment began to gradually compose him- 
self into a state of greater ease and seeming 
tranquillity. Confident, through the un- 
broken trust of years, that Adam's pro- 
mise, once given, might be implicitly relied 
on, Jerrem needed no further assurance 
than these few written words to satisfy him 
that every human effort would be made on 
his behalf; and the knowledge of this, and 
that old comrades would be near him, wait- 
ing to unite their strength for his rescue, 
was in itself a balm and consolation. 

He grew quite loquacious about the 
■crestfallen authorities, the surprise of the 
crowd, and the disappointment of the 
ruffianly mob deprived of their certain 
prey ; while the two who listened sat with 
a tightening grip upon their hearts, for 



264 ADAM AND EVE. 

when these things should come to be, the 
Hfe of him who spoke them would have 
passed away, and the immortal soul have 
flown from out that perishable husk on 
which his last vain thoughts were still 
being centred. 

Poor Joan ! The time had yet to come 
Avhen she would spend herself with many a 
sad regret and sharp upbraiding that this 
and that had not been said and done ; but 
now, her spirit swallowed up in desolation 
and sunk beneath the burden of despair, 
she sat all silent close by Jerrem's side, 
covering his hands with many a mute caress,, 
yet never daring to lift up her eyes to look 
into his face without a burst of grief sweep- 
ing across to shake her like a reed. 

Jerrem could eat and drink, but Joan's 
lips never tasted food. A fever seemed to 
burn within, and fill her with its restless 
torment ; the beatings of her throbbing 



ADAM AND EVE. 265- 

heart turned her first hot, then cold, as 
each pulse said the time to part was hurry- 
ing to its end. 

By Jerrem's wish Joan was not told that, 
on the morning of his death, to Heuben 
alone admittance to him had been granted ;. 
therefore when the eve of that morrow 
came, and the time to say farewell actually 
arrived, the girl was spared the knowledge 
that this parting was more than the sha- 
dow of that last good-bye w^hich so soon 
would have to be said for ever. Still the 
sudden change in Jerrem's face pierced her 
afresh, and broke down that last barrier of 
control over a o-rief she could subdue no 
longer. In vain the turnkeys warned them 
that time was up, and Joan must go. 
Reuben entreated too that they should say 
good-bye ; the two but clung together in 
more desperate necessity, until Keuben, 
seeing that further force would be required,. 



-266 ADAM AND EVE. 

stepped forward, and stretching out his 
hand found it caught at by Jerrem, and held 
at once with Joan's, while in words, from 
which all strength of tone seemed to die 
away, Jerrem whispered, ' Reuben, if ever it 
could come to pass that when I'm gone, 
you and she might find it some day in your 
minds to stand together — one — say 'twas the 
thing he washed for most — before he went.' 
Then with a feeble effort to push her into 
Reuben's arms, he caught her back, and 
straining her close to his heart again, cried 
■out, 'Oh Joan! but death comes bitter, 
when it means good-bye to such as you.' 
Another cry, a closer strain, then Jerrem's 
^rms relax — his hold gives way, and Joan 
falls staggering back; the door is opened — 
shut ; the struggle is past, and ere their sad 
voices can come echoing back, Jerrem and 
Joan have looked their last in life. 




CHAPTEE XIII. 




HEX Reuben found that to be a 
witness of Jerrem's death Joan 
must take her stand among the 
lawless mob who made holiday of such 
sad scenes as this, his decision was that 
the idea was untenable. Jerrem too had a 
stronof desire that Joan should not see him 
•die, and although his avoidance of anything 
that directly touched upon that dreaded 
moment had kept him from openly naming 
Jiis wishes^ the hints dropped satisfied 



268 ADAM AND EVE. 

Keuben that the knowledge of her absence 
would be a matter of relief to him. But 
how get Joan to listen to his scruples, 
when her whole mind was set on keeping 
by Jerrem's side until hope was past and 
life was over % 

' Couldn't ee get her to take sommut that 
her wouldn't sleep oif 'til 'twas late "?' 
Jerrem had said, after Keuben had told 
him that the next morning he must come 
alone ; and the suggestion made was seized 
on at once by Reuben, who, under pretence 
of getting something to steady her shaken 
nerves, procured from the apothecary near 
a simple draught, which Joan in good faith 
swallowed. And then, Reuben having 
promised in case she fell asleep to awaken 
her at the appointed hour, the poor soul,, 
worn out by sorrow and fatigue, threw 
herself down dressed as she was upon the 
bed, and soon was in a heavy sleep, from 



ADAM AND E VE. 269 

which she did not rouse until well into 
the following day, when some one moving 
in the room made her start up. 

For a moment she seemed dazed, then 
rubbing her eyes as if to clear away those 
happy visions which had come to her in 
sleep, she gazed about until Keuben, who 
had at first drawn back, came forward to 
speak to her. 

' Why, Reuben,' she cried, ' how's this ? 
have I been dreamin' or what ? The day 
light's come, and see — the sun !' 

And here she stopped, her parched 
mouth half unclosed, as fears came crowd- 
ing thick upon her mind, choking her 
further utterance. One look at Reuben's 
face had told the tale, and though she did 
not speak again, the ashen hue, that over- 
spread and drove all colour from her cheeks, 
proclaimed to him that she had guessed the 
truth. 



270 ADAM AND EVE. 

* 'Twas best, my dear/ he said, ' that you 
should sleep while he went to his rest.' 

But the unlooked-for shock had been too 
great a strain on body and mind, alike 
overtaxed and weak ; and falling back, Joan 
lay for hours as one unconscious and de- 
void of life. And Reuben sat silent by her 
side, paying no heed as hour by hour 
went by, till ni^-ht had come, and all around 
was dark ; then some one came softly up 
the stairs and crept into the room, and 
Eve's whispered * Reuben' broke the spell. 

Yes, all had gone well. The body, res- 
cued and safe, was now placed within a house 
near to the churchyard in which Eve's 
mother lay; there it was to be buried. And 
there, the next day, the commonplace event 
of one among many funerals being over, 
the four thus linked by fate were brought 
together, and Adam and Joan again stood 
face to face. 



ADAM AND EVE. 271 

Heightened by the disguise, which in 
order to avoid detection he was obhged to 
adopt, the alteration in Adam was so com- 
plete that Joan stood aghast l^efore this 
seeming stranger, while a fresh smart came 
into Adam's open wounds as he gazed 
upon the changed face of the once comely 
Joan. 

A terrible barrier such as, until felt, they 
had never dreaded, seemed to have sprung^ 
up to separate and divide these two. In 
voluntarily they shrank at each other's 
touch, and quailed beneath each other's 
gaze, while each turned with a feeling of 
relief to him and to her who now consti- 
tuted their individual refuge and support. 

Yes, strange as it seemed to Adam, and 
unaccountable to Joan, i^lie clung to Reuben, 
lie to Eve, before whom each could be natural 
and unrestrained, while between their pre- 
sent selves a great gulf had opened out 



272 ADAM AND EVE. 

which naught but time or distance could 
bridge over. 

So Adam went back to his hiding-place, 
Reuben to his shop, and Joan and Eve to 
the old home in Knight's Passage^ as much 
lost amid the crowd of thronged London 
as if they had already taken refuge in that 
far-off land which had now become the goal 
of Adam's thoughts and keen desires. Eve 
too, fearing some fresh disaster, was equally 
anxious for their departure, and most of 
Reuben's spare time was swallowed up in 
making the necessary arrangements. A 
passage in his name for himself and. his wife 
was secured in a ship about to start. At 
the last moment this passage was to be 
transferred to Adam and Eve, whose mar- 
riage would take place a day or two before 
the vessel sailed. The transactions on 
which the successful fulfilment of these 
various events depended were mostly 



ADAM AND EVE. 273 

conducted by Reuben, aided by the coun- 
sels of Mr. Osborne, and the assistance of 
Captain Triggs, ^vhose good-fellowship, 
no longer withheld, made him a valuable 
coadjutor. 

Fortunately Triggs' vessel, through some 
detention of its cargo, had remained in Lon- 
don for an unusually long time ; and now 
when it did sail, Joan was to take passage 
in her back to Polperro. 

' Awh, Reuben, my dear,' sighed Joan- 
one evening, as. Eve having gone to see 
Adam, the two walked out towards the 
little spot where Jerrem lay, and as 
they went discussed Joan's near departure, 
' I wish to goodness } ou'd pack up yer 
alls and come 'longs to Polperro home with 
me; 'tud be ever so much better than stay in' 
to this gashly London, where there ain't a 
blow o' air that's fresh to draw your 
breath in.' 

VOL. III. 58 



274 ADAM AND E VE. 

' Why, nonsense !' said Keuben ; * you 
wouldn't have me if I'd come/ 

' How not have 'ee V exclaimed Joan. 
' Why if so be, I thought you'd come, I'd 
never stir from where I be until I got the 
promise of it/ 

'But there wouldn't be nothin' forme to 
do,' said Keuben. 

' Why, iss, there would, oceans,' returned 
Joan. 'Laws, I knaws clocks by scores as 
hasn't gone for twenty year and more. Us 
has got two ourselves that wan won't strike, 
and t'other you can't make tick.' 

Keuben smiled, then growing more 
serious he said, 'But do you know, Joan, 
that yours isn't the first head it's entered 
into about going down home with you ? I've 
had a mind towards it myself many times 
of late.' 

' Why, then, do come to wance,' said Joan 
excitedly ; ' for so long as they leaves me 



ADAM AND EVE. 275 

the house, there'll be a home with me and 
Uncle Zebedee, and I'll go bail for the 
welcome you'll get gived 'ee there.' 

Reuben was silent, and Joan, attributing 
this to some hesitation over the plan, threw 
further weight into her argument by saying, 
' There's the chapel too, Reuben ; only to 
think o' the sig^ht o' o^ood you could do 
praichin' to 'em and that ! for though it 
didn't seem to make no odds before, I 
reckons there's not a few that w^ants, like me, 
to be told o' some place where they treats 
folks better than they does down here 
below.' 

' Joan,' said Keuben^ after a pause, 
speaking out of his own thoughts and 
paying no heed to the words she had been 
saying, 'you know all about Eve and me, 
don't you ?' 

Joan nodded her head. 

' How I've felt about her, so that I 

58—2 



276 ADAM AND EVE, 

believe the hold she's got on me no one on 
earth will ever push her off from.' 

^ Ah, poor sawl !' sighed Joan compas- 
sionately ; ' IVe often had a feelin' for what 
you'd to bear, and for this reason too, that 
I knaws myself what 'tis to be ousted 
from the heart you'm cravin' to call yer 
own.' 

^Why, yes, of course,' said Keuben 
briskly ; * you were set down for Roger 
once, wern't you ?' 

*Ah, and there's they to Polperro, 
mother amongst 'em too, who'll tell 'ee 
now, that if Eve had never showed her face 
inside the place, Adam 'ud ha' had me 
after all. But there, all that's past and 
gone long ago.' 

There was another pause, which Eeuben 
broke by saying suddenly, ^Joan, should 
3^ou take it very out of place if I was to 
ask you whether after a bit you could 



ADAM AND E VE, 277 

marry me ? I daresay now such a thought 
never entered your head before/ 

' Well, iss it has,' said Joan ; 'and o' late, 
ever since that blessed dear spoke they 
words he did, I've often fell to wonderin' 
if so be 'tud ever come to pass. Not, mind, 
that I should ha' bin put out if t' had so 
happened that you'd never axed me like, 
but still I thought sometimes as how you 
might; and then agen I says, ''Why 
should he, though T ' 

* There's many a reason why I should 
ask ijoii. Joan,' said Reuben, smiling at 
her unconscious frankness, * though very 
few why you should consent to take a man 
whose love another woman has flung away.' 

' Awh, so far as that goes, the both of us 
is takin' what's another's orts, you knaw,' 
smiled Joan. 

' Then is it agreed V asked Reuben, 
stretching out his hand. 



278 ADAM AND EVE. 

' Iss, so far as I goes 'tis, with all my 
heart.' Then, as she took his hand a 
change came to her April face, and looking 
at him through her swimming eyes she 
said, ' And very grateful too, I'm to 'ee, 
Reuben, for I don't knaw by neither 
another wan who'd take up with a poor 
heart-broke maid like me, and they she's 
looked to all her life disgraced by others 
and theysselves.' 

Reuben pressed the hand that Joan had 
given to him, and drawing it through his 
arm, the two w^alked on in silence, ponder- 
in 2: over the unlooked-for endint^ to the 
strange events they both had lately passed 
through. Joan's heart was full of a con- 
tentment which made her think, ' How 
pleased Adam will be, and won't mother 
be glad ! and Uncle Zebedee 'ull have 
somebody to look to now, and keep poor 
Jonathan straight, and put things a bit in 



ADAM AND EVE. 279 

order.' While Eeuben, bewildered by the 
thoughts which crowded to his mind, 
seemed unable to disentangle them. Could 
it be possible that be, Keuben May, was 
going down to live at Polperro — a place 
whose very name he had once taught him- 
self to abominate 1 That he could be 
willingly casting his lot amid a people 
whom he had but lately branded as thieves, 
outcasts, reprobates \ Involuntarily his 
eyes turned towards Joan, and a nimbus in 
which perfect charity was intertwined with 
great love and singleness of heart seemed 
to -float about her head and shed its 
radiance on her face, and its sight was to 
Reuben as the first touch of love, for he 
was smitten with a sense of his own 
unworthiness, and though he did not 
speak he asked that a like spirit to that 
which filled Joan might rest upon him- 
self. 



280 ADAM AND EVE. 

That evening Eve was told the news 
which Joan and Reuben had to tell ; and as 
she listened, the mixed emotions which 
swelled within her perplexed her not a 
little, for even while feeling that the two 
wishes she most desired — Joan cared for and 
Pteuben made happy — were thus fulfilled, 
her heart seemed weighted with a fresh 
disaster — another wrench had come to 
part her from that life soon to be nothing 
but a lesson and a memory. And Adam, 
when he was told, although the words he 
said were honest words and true, and truly 
he did rejoice, there yet within him lay a 
sadness born of regret at rendering up 
that love so freely given to him, now to be 
garnered for another's use ; and henceforth 
every word that Reuben spoke, each 
promise that he gave — though all drawn 
forth by Adam's own requests — stuck 
everyone a separate thorn within his heart, 



ADAM AND E VE. 281 

sore with tlie thought of being an outcast 
from the birthplace that he loved, and cut 
off from those whose faces now he yearned 
to look upon. 

Xo vision opened up to Adam's view the 
prosperous life the future held in store. 
No still small voice then w^hispered in his 
ear that out of this sorrow was to come the 
grace w^hich made success sit well on him, 
and Eve ; and though as years went by, and 
intercourse became more rare, their now 
keen interest in Polperro and its people 
was swallowed uj) amid the many claims a 
busy life laid on them both, each noble 
action done — each good deed wrought by 
Adam, and by Eve too, bore on it the un- 
seen impress of that sore chastening through 
which they now^ were passing. 

Out of the savings which from time to 
time Adam had placed with Mr. Macey 
enough was found to pay the passage- 



282 ADAM AND EVE. 

money out, and keep them from being^ 
pushed by any pressing want on land- 
ing. 

Ah'eady, at the nearest church, Adam 
and Eve had been married, and nothing 
now remained but to get on board the 
vessel, which had already dropped down 
the river, and was to sail the followinor 
morning. 

Triggs had volunteered to put them 
and their possessions safely on board, and 
Beuben and Joan, with Eve's small personal 
belongings, were to meet them at the steps, 
close by which the Marij Janes boat 
would be found waiting. The time had 
come when Adam could lay aside his dis- 
guise, and appear in much the same trim 
he usually did when at Polperro. 

Joan was the first to spy him drawing- 
near, and holding out both her hands to 
greet the welcome change, she cried^ 



ADAM AND E VE. 28a 

* Thank the Lord for lettin' me see im his 
own self wance more. Awh, Adam ! awh, 
my dear ! 't seems as if I could spake to 
'ee now, and know 'ee for the same agen. 
Look to un, Reuben : you don't wonder 
now Avhat made us all so proud of un at 
at home.' 

Reuben smiled, but Adam shook his 
head — the desolation of this sad farewell 
robbed him of every other power but that 
of drainino' to the dreo^s its bitterness. 
During the vrhole of that long day Eve 
and he had hardly said one word, each 
racked with thoughts to which no speech 
gave utterance. Mechanically each asked 
about the things the other one had brought, 
and seemed to find relief in feigning much 
anxiety about their safety, until Triggs, 
fearing they might outstay their time, gave 
them a hint it would not do to linger long ; 
and, with a view to their leave-takino: being^ 



284 ADAM AND EVE. 



unconstrained, he volunteered to take the 
few remaining things down to the boat, and 
stow them safely away, adding that when 
they heard his whistle given it would be 
the signal that they must start without 
delay. 

The spot they had fixed on for the start- 
ing-place was one but little used, and well 
removed from all the bustle of a more 
frequented landing. A waterman lounged 
here and there, but seeing the party was 
another's fare, vouchsafed to them no 
further interest. The ragged mud-imps 
stayed their noisy pranks to scrutinise the 
country build of Triggs' boat, leaving the 
four, unnoticed, to stand apart and see each 
in the other's face the reflection of that 
misery which filled his own. 

Parting for ever! no hopes, no expec- 
tations, no looking forward, nothing to 
whisper, ' We shall meet again.' ' Good-bye 



ADAM AND EVE. 285 

for ever' was written on each face and 
echoed in each heart. Words could not 
soothe that sufferino- which turned this 
common sorrow into an individual torture, 
which each must bear unaided and alone ; 
and so they stood silent, and with outward 
calm, knowing that on that brink of w^oe 
the quiver of an eye might overthrow their 
all but lost control. 

The sun was sinking fast ; the gathering 
mists of eventide were rising to shadow all 
around ; the toil of day was drawing to its 
close ; labour was past ; repose was near at 
hand; its spirit seemed to hover around and 
breathe its calm uj)on those worn, tried 
souls. Suddenly a shrill v\'liistle sounds 
upon their ears, and breaks the spell ; the 
women start, and throw their arms around 
each other's necks. Adam stretches his 
hand out, and Reuben grasps it in his 
own. 



286 ADAM AND EVE. 

* Reuben, good-bye. God deal with you 
as you shall deal with those you're going 
among.' 

^ Adam, be true to her, and I'll be true 
to those you leave behind.' 

'Joan,' and Roger's voice sounds hard 
and strained, and then a choking conies 
into his throat, and though he wants to 
tell her what he feels, to ask her to forgive 
all he has made her suifer, he cannot speak 
a word. Vainly he strives, but not a sound 
will come ; and these two, whose lives, so 
Ofrown toQ^ether, are now to be rent 
asunder, stand stricken and dumb, look- 
ing from out their eyes that last farewell 
which their poor quivering lips refuse 
to utter. 

' God bless and keep you. Eve,' Reuben's 
voice is sayins:, as, taking her hands within 
his own, he holds them to his heart, and 
for a moment lets them rest there. ' Oh, 



ADAM AND EVE. 287 

friends,' he says, ' there is a land where 
partings never come ; upon that shore may 
we four meet again !' 

Then for a moment all their hands are 
clasped and held as in a vice, and then they 
turn, and two are gone and two are left 
behind. 

And now the two on land stand with 
their eyes strained on the boat, which 
slowly fades away into the vapoury mist 
which lies beyond ; then Reuben turns 
and takes Joan by the hand, and silently 
the two go back together, while Adam and 
Eve draw near the ship which is to take 
them to that far-off shore to which Hope's 
torch, rekindled, now is pointing. 

' Good-bye' is said to Triggs, the boat 
pushes off, and the two, left standing side 
by side^ watch it away until it seems a 
speck which suddenly is swallowed up and 
disappears from sight. Then Adam puts 



288 ADAM AND EVE. 

his arm round Eve, and as they draw closer 
together, from out their lips come sighing 
forth the whispered words — ' Farewell, 
Farewell.' 



THE END. 



Eir.LINa AND SONS, PRINTERS AND ELECTROTYPERS, OL'ILDFORD. 

S. & H. 



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